MARQUETTE, Mich. (WZMQ) – Starting December with little to no snow seems like a good thing, especially for the roads, but winter maintenance is still crucial.
Though mild winters may start to relieve the stress of driving on icy roads and in the snow, what’s under the hood could pose a laundry list of expenses if not maintained. According to a survey by Accident Treatment Centers, almost half of Americans are less prepared for winter driving.
Quality Car Care Mechanic Mike Grang commented that safety and preparedness start with what meets the road. “You see a lot with tire rotations, people kind of forget about tire rotations you should be doing tire rotations every 5-6,000 miles, you get a tire in a position for too long and you have two tires worn out and two tires still good. When you do a tire rotation it’s usually good to do front-to-back on the same side”.
As temperature drops, a tire’s air pressure can also go down, due to the rubber expanding and contracting. Grang noted that one way to keep up with this and avoid flats or blowouts is by adding pressure to each tire during the cold season.
“In the winter months, a lot of people will bump up their tire pressures just a little bit, if a tire is set for 34 psi they’ll round it up to 40 PSI so they don’t and that fluctuation doesn’t cause the light to be coming on all the time,” commented Grang.
Oil, power steering, and even transmission fluid can also thicken with the cold. The battery can have a lot of wear in the winter months as well, especially with the added moisture of snow that may cause corrosion. Another mixture on the roads that could cause more issues than we can see is salt. If it’s not cleaned off the car regularly, the salt on the undercarriage can begin eating away at the car and creating rust.
“In the long haul, the basic problem is the rust things break bolts break and then you can get to a point where there are older cars you start to get holes in the frame and holes in the subframe,” continued Grang. Grang said even with oil changes and tire rotations regularly, the quality of your car care is what will keep it running safely.
Click here, to see how you can prepare for winter driving and what routine checks you might need to be done on your vehicle.