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Prepare Your Car For The Winter
Some General Considerations
Cold period of the year (but so loved by children) just arrived. Now it is time to put some questions about how your car will behave in the winter
The most important part of your car, yet so easily overlooked, is the cooling system. Without adequate protection, coolant may freeze in winter and can destroy the engine. Your engine coolant is a mixture of water and anti-freeze, which should reduce the freezing point of coolant. If the ratio of water to anti-freeze is wrong, the mixture will freeze.
Since water is one of the liquid and almost any liquid in its natural state freezes, it may make the engine crack due to its pressure. You can check the freezing point of coolant with a simple tool called a Ball-Type Tester. There are also test strips available that can check freezing. If coolant is two years older or have more than 30,000 miles you should consider change it
The engine should be checked in the terms of fuel used. It is better to use higher octane fuel to prevent freezing. Water can get into your fuel tank due to a bad gasoline quality or a defective gas tank cap
Once the motor is protected you should focus to your tires. Check the tread depth and pressures before wintertime hits. The pressure in your tires can drop as the temperatures plummet. If your tires are getting worn, I would suggest replacing them to get the best traction in the winter months. You may even want to consider getting an inexpensive set of steel wheels with dedicated snow tires for the winter months. All-Season tires do every season well, but none of them excellent. By running a set of winter tires, you will get the best winter traction possible and keep your car on the road where it belongs.
Your paint will also need some protection from all the salt and chemicals on the road. Make sure wash your car well, and then apply a liberal coat of wax over the entire car. You can also wax your wheels if you have aluminum wheels, which will help to stop pitting and keep the wheels clean. The biggest mistake I see people make when washing a car is to not rinse their wash mitt or sponge, or rinsing it in the wash bucket. Make sure you rinse off the sponge or mitt outside the bucket with your hose. This will keep the dirt that you just wiped off the car from becoming sandpaper and you clean the rest of your car.
A good first aid kit is valuable any time of year, but what else should you have in your trunk? A good ice scraper, bag of salt or sand for traction and a blanket incase you are stranded and need to keep warm are all vital. If you have a rear wheel drive vehicle, extra weight in the trunk will help with traction. A bag of cement or sand can give you the needed traction in the winter months.
The colder months of the year can take their toll on your car, especially if you live up north or in the Midwest. But a few simple preventative measures will keep your car looking good and protect it from the ice and slush. Your car will thank you and you’ll thank yourself when you get ready to sell it.
Here are a few tips for protecting your car from the cold weather:
1. Protect your car‘s appearance and value. According to the International Car Wash Association (ICA), regular washing and waxing will help maintain your car‘s appearance and resale value. A car that’s in good condition is worth a lot more than a car with dull paint or rust.
"Most car owners realize the value of regular oil changes to protect the engine,” explains Mark Thorsby, the executive director of ICA. "But if they neglect the oil changes and have to replace the engine, the car could still be as good as new. But a car with dull paint and a lot of rust can never be economically restored. The best prevention is to wash and wax your car regularly at a professional car wash.”
Thousands of professional car washes around the world offer a wide range of services to help protect your car‘s finish from harmful rusting. There’s simply no reason not to keep your vehicle in great shape. Most car washes offer varying levels of service to suit all of your car care needs.
As a starting point, try an exterior tunnel type car wash to easily apply protective waxes and undercarriage treatments. You might also consider detailing or custom polishing services for more extensive protection for your vehicle.
By properly applying a high quality polish, you can restore a shiny finish to your car. And with a well-done detail service, you can thoroughly clean everything from the air conditioner vents to the rugs in the trunk.
2. Sometimes your car just needs a quick fix. If you find yourself running short on time but still need your car professionally cleaned, you can try a self-service car wash that provides several effective self-cleaning services to choose from.For best results, be sure to follow the step-by-step instructions posted in the bay. These usually recommend starting with a pre-soak to loosen any road grime that may be on your car.Next, use the high-pressure soap wash on your car. Then use the foaming brush for gentle scrubbing, followed by the fresh water rinse. And be sure to take advantage of any special tire and wheelcleaners that may be available.To ensure maximum protection and a brilliant shine, finish up by applying the wax. Many self-serve car washes offer a spot-free rinse option where all of the car cleaning solutions are specially formulated to remove tough road dirt and protect and enhance your car‘s shine.
3. Protect Your Car from winter weather and everything that comes along with it. To get a head start on protecting your car from winter‘s ill effects, be aware that the worst thing that you can do to your car is nothing! Don’t worry that your car might freeze up. Washing road salt, mud, and slush from your car during coldweather is vital to maintaining it’s appearance.The single best thing that you can do during the cold months is to carefully wash your vehicle often at a professional car wash.If the temperature hovers around freezing and you’ve been driving on salted roads, you may need to wash your car every other day or so. This may seem a little excessive, but your caris a very expensive item and it’s very important to protect it.Properly washing your car should also include an undercarriage rinse to remove salt from those hard-to-reach places that are most likely to rust, especially the bumpers and in the wheel wells.
4. Protect your truck or pickup with a quality truck bed cover.
Fall is the best time to get your car ready for the winter season. Having your car professionally washed is a great way to start. Your car, your wallet, and you will be glad you did.
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