Is Your Car Ready for a PA Winter?

The cold is here. It reached -4 here the other day. I wish life would stop around here when it gets cold but it doesn't. I still have errands to run, kids to take to work, and of course, fun places to travel. Don't let car trouble leave you out in the cold. Follow these simple steps. 

Routine Care and Tune Ups: Breaking down is never fun, but breaking down in bad weather, or just cold weather is really no fun. Make an appointment to get your car checked out and get a tune up. Have the mechanic check for leaks and worn out hoses. 

Check the tires: Make sure the tires are in good condition. If you can put a penny in the tire threads and see all of Abe's head, it is time for new tires. If the tires are low on tread, they cannot grip the road the way they need to, which can cause the car to slide. 

Check the cooling system: Believe me when I say, you never want to hear that you have a cracked block from your mechanic. It is expensive and a major hassle. One of the last things you want the mechanic say to you is that you have cracked your engine block. Beyond being a hassle, it is expensive. It is important to make sure that the antifreeze is filled. In most parts of the country, a 50/50 mix of antifreeze/water ratio is good, but be sure to check your car's owner's manual to make sure. If it has been a while since you have had a coolant flush think about it. Fresh coolant gets dirt and particles in it after time and loses its effectiveness. 

Check the battery: Cold is a battery killer. If the battery is drained completely too many times, it will not hold its charge. It take more power to start a car in the cold weather than it does in warmer weather. Make sure your battery is not too old and has enough power stored. Many auto part stores can check the voltage left in a battery. They can advise you if you need a new battery.    

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