7 ways you can prep your car for winter

Written by 
Bill Tsouvalas
Bill Tsouvalas is the managing director and a key company spokesperson at Savvy. As a personal finance expert, he often shares his insights on a range of topics, being featured on leading news outlets including News Corp publications such as the Daily Telegraph and Herald Sun, Fairfax Media publications such as the Australian Financial Review, the Seven Network and more. Bill has over 15 years of experience working in the finance industry and founded Savvy in 2010 with a vision to provide affordable and accessible finance options to all Australians. He has built Savvy from a small asset finance brokerage into a financial comparison website which now attracts close to 2 million Aussies per year and was included in the BRW’s Fast 100 in 2015 as one of the fastest-growing companies in the country. He’s passionate about helping Australians make financially savvy decisions and reviews content across the brand to ensure its accuracy. You can follow Bill on LinkedIn.
Our authors
, updated on November 25th, 2021       

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With the change in temperature summoning chilly evenings this means one thing. Winter is coming. Although you would rather spend most of your time hibernating indoors you will most likely use your car to get from place to place. The last thing you want is for your car to sputter and die out in the cold. Here are seven tips to get your car ready for winter.

Check your battery

Battery is one of those parts of your car that will feel the pinch of winter. It decreases significantly due to its high usage to keep the car running and warm. Checking your batteries performance a few weeks prior to winter officially kicking in to check if it will be able to perform at its peak performance. Keep your car sheltered out of the cold in a locked garage to help protect your battery. It will also make it easier to get your car started when compared to keeping it outside.

Check your windshield

Windshield problems start off small but can grow into something that is expensive if ignored. Literally. If you have noticed a crack or a chip, it is best to get this fixed as soon as possible. During winter the extreme drop in temperatures can cause the crack or chip to extend, which can shatter your window should you hit a bump in the road. Some car repair companies offer a free glass filler to fix the crack or chip if caught on time. It is best to fix a crack than to replace the whole thing at an average cost of $200 to $400.

Check your wiper blades

Replacing your wiper blades is essential to ensure that you can drive safe in various weather conditions. These can usually be replaced after 6-12 months to make sure that they are working properly. An investment that you can make this winter is to get windshield wiper fluid to make seeing clearer when driving under low light conditions.

Check the road conditions

It is almost impossible to suggest not to drive, but when driving during winter it is best to check the weather conditions before heading out. Keeping tabs on weather reports on the radio and through a weather app can prevent you from being stuck in a slippery situation where the weather takes a turn for the worst.

Stock up on supplies

When driving on cold and wet conditions anything can happen. The battery can conk out or you can get into an accident on a deserted road. You want to be prepared with an emergency box should you find yourself in such a situation. Have a box kept in the boot of the car that has: • Jumper cables • Road flares • First-aid kit • Portable radio • Energy snacks • A full charged emergency phone

Check your engine coolant levels

The engine is the heart to your car and you can find yourself in a jam if this freezes over. You can purchase antifreeze that protects your engine from freezing over. Investing in a kit that checks your engine coolant levels from an auto supply store will also know if your engine is still in the clear from freezing over. This easy to apply antifreeze will ensure that your car continues to run in mint condition.

Check your tires

This is the most important check that you need to conduct. A tires pressure can drop during colder weathers. It is important to check your tire pressure at least once a month to make sure that they will be able to handle the road in wet and cold conditions. If you are not sure of what the correct pressure is for your wheels you can find the information inside the driver’s door jam.

If your car does not have an ABS braking system, then maybe it is time to upgrade to a car that does. It is also best to buy a car that has a five-star rating on the Australian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) to know that you have more chances of protection during a crash.

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