Check the following:
- Battery: The cold weather drains the power out of car batteries. Have your battery tested and, if necessary, replaced before heading into the winter months.
- Tires: The colder weather also decreases the amount of air in your tires. Inspect your tires for proper inflation and tread. And consider investing in a set of winter tires, designed with better tread for snow and ice.
- Fluid Levels: Your vehicle will be working harder during the the winter season, so help it operate at its best by ensuring that all fluid levels are sufficiently filled. You may want to keep an extra supply of coolant and oil in your trunk for emergencies.
- Windshield Wipers: Snow flurries impede your visibility while driving. Make sure that your windshield wiper blades are in good condition, and your windshield washer fluid is always full to ensure you're seeing as clearly as possible. Keep extra windshield fluid in the trunk.
Pack the following in your vehicle:
- Shovel / Snowbrush: Most drivers wouldn't leave home without their snowbrush, but many fail to keep a shovel in their trunk. This tool could be a lifesaver should your car veer off-road and you need to dig your vehicle out of the snow.
- Sand or cat litter: Having a bag of sand or cat litter handy can prove extremely helpful in providing traction in the event that your vehicle gets stuck. An added bonus is that a couple bags of this material in the trunk can provide extra weight for greater traction in lighter vehicles.
- Emergency Kit: A kit that includes your jumper cables, non-perishable food, water, flashlight, first-aid kit, and a car charger for your cellphone could save your life in the event that you breakdown or your vehicle gets stuck and you have to wait for help.
Although these supplies do not take the place of driving slowly and carefully, they can help you be prepared for winter weather months. For more tips on winter driving, log onto www.safecar.gov. And be sure to call your Preferred Mutual independent insurance agent today to review your insurance policy.