Okay, it’s true that Atlanta isn’t the coldest or most severe climate in the country as far as winters go. However, our winters can still get pretty cold. We even occasionally see snow! (Or, well, flurries.) Anyways, the point is that when a “winter weather event” swoops in, it can happen with little warning. That’s why it’s important to take steps now to get your vehicle ready for the winter. Check out these ten steps to get your car all set for the cold.
Preparing your car for the winter
1. Take your car to the mechanic.
Yes, going to the mechanic might not be your favorite thing to do. But they’re the pros, and they can check the following things:
- The battery
- The antifreeze
- The thermostat
- The brakes (Kind of important, right?)
- The heating system (So you don’t turn into a popsicle while you’re on the road)
- The defroster (Since having a clear windshield is helpful for driving)
So, get a trustworthy, reputable mechanic to give your car a quick check-up. The cold weather can do weird things to a vehicle, and you can hit the road with more confidence knowing your car is (hopefully) ready to take it.
2. Make sure your tires have the proper tread depth.
If your tires look like they’ve seen better days, it might be time for new ones. Your tire tread depth needs to be at a safe level so that the tire can grip the road properly (which is especially important in winter, when it rains a lot.) Bald tires plus winter does not equal a safe ride.
3. Check your tire pressure.
Winter weather can wreak havoc on your tire pressure. It can actually cause the pressure to drop, meaning that you might need to add a little bit of air. Make sure to keep an eye on your tire pressure and pay attention to your tire pressure light.
4. Check the car’s lights.
Do a check of your vehicle’s lights. That means headlights, taillights, brake lights, hazard lights…Basically, just check all the lights and make sure they work and no bulbs are out. All of your lights need to be fully functional so that other drivers can see you. You’ve probably noticed that Daylight Saving Time and winter means it’s getting darker a lot earlier these days. You’ll probably need your headlights more in the winter, and you’ll need other drivers to be able to see you.
5. Think about your windshield wiper fluid and wiper blades.
You can also consider swapping your windshield wiper fluid for on that’s specially designed for winter and its freezing temperatures. (Normal wiper fluid can actually freeze when the temperature takes a nosedive.)
6. Consider your wiper blades.
Yes, it might not snow too often in Atlanta, but we do get frost and ice. You might want to think about switching your wiper blades for winter ones that are made to combat snow and ice. Being stuck with snow, frost, or ice on your windshield can make for a frazzled morning if you’re trying to defrost your car and you’re running late for work.
7. Check your windshield washing system.
It’s really not fun to drive with a dirty, grimy windshield that you can’t see through very well, especially when the sun hits it just right and plays tricks on your visibility and eyes. Make sure your windshield washing system is ready to go so that you can clear off your windshield if needed.
8. Pack an emergency kit for your car.
Just in case you get stuck somewhere or your car breaks down, it’s a good idea to have an “emergency kit” packed and loaded in the truck. Include items like:
- Extra clothes and sweaters
- Nonperishable snacks
- Flashlights and batteries
- A first aid kit
- A snow/ice scraper (Yes, this is a useful item to have even in Atlanta.)
9. And don’t forget to clean the car off before you drive.
If there ever is snow or ice and it coats your car in white powder, make sure to take the time to brush it off and clean off the car. Clear the windshield, the hood, the roof, your headlights, and your taillights. It might be cold and it might take a little while, but it’s safer to plan to spend those few extra minutes than to have your visibility obstructed.
10. Check your auto insurance.
Okay, okay, we don’t want to sound pessimistic…but if you do have a little snafu with the car, it’s important to know what your Atlanta car insurance will cover. Check your limits of car insurance and your coverages so you know how your insurance will protect you. What are your limits of liability insurance? Do you have collision and comprehensive coverage? What’s your deductible? Are you prepared for what the winter could bring?
Another winter is upon us, which means that it’s time to make sure that your car is ready for the cold weather and the possibility of snow. Yes, even in the South it’s important to make sure your car is winter-ready and safe for the entire season.
Looking for car insurance quotes? We can help. Our agents are here to help you get multiple quotes for Atlanta car insurance so you can look at different coverage options and prices. Get started with your quotes by filling out our online form or giving us a call today.