Is Your Vehicle Winter Ready? | Autoline Toyota, Niagara Falls, ONDec 17th, 2019
Winter is something that a lot of us dread. It’s cold. It’s gloomy. It’s wet and snowy – and it means we have to winterize our vehicles. The changeover of seasons is rarely fun, but here at Autoline Toyota we want to make sure that everyone is as safe as they can be for the driving seasons so we have come together and compiled a quick list of tips to help you this winter.
Tip#1: GRAB YOUR WINTER TOOLS!
This one is the biggie. Visibility, aside from winter tires to stay in control of your vehicle, is arguably one of the biggest concerns in winter. Have the tools handy and in your vehicle at all times this winter.
SNOW CLEARING TOOLS: A snow brush safe, and appropriate for your vehicle is key. If you have a truck, or SUV or a vehicle that is hard for you to reach the top of to brush off snow, an extendable snow brush is a great idea. If your snow brush doesn’t have a scraper on it, a scraper is also a much needed tool to keep your windows clear of ice.
REMOTE STARTER: For those who have a separate remote start from their regular car fob, it’s time to dig it out and attach it to your keys for those days you need to warm up your vehicle before you leave.
GLOVES AND A HAT: While this seems silly to some, it’s always a fantastic idea to have a spare pair of gloves and a hat in your vehicle in the case that you forget your gloves, or the ones you have get wet through a full day out and about. Waterproof gloves are ideal!
JUMPER CABLES: Jumper Cables are a must have in the winter. Not just to boost your own car, but in case a fellow motorist needs a hand with theirs.
WASHER FLUID: You WILL use more washer fluid in the winter because of all the salt and sludge on the road. Make sure you always have some in the back of your car so you can top up if you are running low or running out.
SAND: Having a small bag of sand is a great idea to have in your car in the winter incase you get stuck in a slick spot, putting some sand down will help you gain traction. Sand is also quite necessary if you own a pickup truck. Put a few bags of sand in the back of the truck bed not just to help with the slippery surfaces, but to help weigh down the back of your truck.
WINTER MATS: It’s time to say goodbye to those comfy carpeted mats you barefoot lovers love, and swap them out for those big and beefy rubber mats.
CLEAN OUT YOUR CAR: I know we sound like your mom but, especially if you have kids, now is a good time to shovel out all the debris from the back seat… and rest of your vehicle. Wet, snowy boots are going to make things messy enough.
CAR SEATS: Now is a good time to double check that your car seat/booster seat is in great condition and installed properly. Make sure those restraint straps are properly anchored and still tight (They could loosen due to use). Additionally, making sure the child safety system you currently have in use is appropriate for the size, weight, and age of your child. Here are the government guidelines if you need a quick update: http://www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/safety/choose-car-seat.shtml.
EMERGENCY CAR KIT: While you should have one in your vehicle year round, now is great time to buy an emergency car kit. If you already have one, check and make sure everything is in working order and stocked up.
FIRST AID KIT: Bumps and bruises happen more often in the winter because of slippery surfaces, weather conditions, and the higher sickness rate with all those germs out in full force. Having supplies on hand to handle basic first aid is key.
FOOD & WATER: Having some water bottles and snacks like granola bars are handy in the case you are in an accident/stranded. It’ll give you something to snack on if you are going to be out there a while.
Tip #2 : REFRESH YOUR DRIVING
While this one may not be something for your vehicle specifically, it’s always a great idea to brush up on those specific winter driving safety tips. Get familiar with the features your vehicle offers for snow traction.
Visit the following link for some great winter driving tips: https://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/motorvehiclesafety/safevehicles-safetyfeatures-winterdriving-index-693.htm
Tip #3 : SERVICE YOUR VEHICLE
If you don’t want to bring your vehicle in to our wonderfully experienced technicians who will quickly get you safely on your way and all tuned up for winter, here are a few key things they recommend for every vehicle:
WINTER TIRES: You are probably tired of hearing us mention it, but we really push winter tires because they are key in giving you the best possible traction on snow and ice covered roads. It’s really time to swap out those summer or all seasons for winter tires. At a minimum rock the all seasons on your vehicle, but winter tires will be best for your vehicle with our Ontario Winters.
Coupled with this, make sure your tires are properly inflated, and make sure you remember to check every once in a while that your tires are still properly inflated.
FLUID TOP UPS: Make sure all your fluids are topped up, especially your coolant and washer fluid.
WIPER BLADES: How are your wiper blades? Were they struggling to clear the rain? Are they a little wobbly looking from that last ice build up? Or do they just plain stink? Get a new pair so when you need them they are ready to help keep your windshield clear.
SET REMINDERS: Most of us have the technology at our fingertips with our smart phones to set reminders. Set a reminder once a week/every other week to do a quick check of your washer fluid and tires to make sure they are all good to go!
Is there anything we forgot? We would love to hear your winter tips when it comes to your vehicle!!
Want our wonderful service team to help you out with getting your vehicle winter ready? Contact us at 905-356-1505 and we will be happy to help!