In the back of my mind, I hear the song “Baby it’s Cold Outside” by Louis Jordan and Ella Fitzgerald playing. I rub my hands together and tab my feet to the beat as hum along to the tune, but then I think now that it’s cold outside there are some things we need to do in order for us to get ready for the Winter. It is time for us to winterize our car and plan for the unexpected. This post will list tips to help you maintain, drive safely and be prepared in case of an emergency and if you are stranded outside this Winter. Lastly, I provide a list of essentials that you need to keep in your car, encourage your kids to help you gather supplies for your winter car emergency kit to help them get involved as well.
Maintenance/ Car Care
- Check your tires. Make sure they are inflated probably and not bald. If you live in a place that has harsh winters change your tires to Winter Tires. This article form Edmunds.com will tell you How to Check your Tire Pressure.
- Check your battery. Autozone will check your battery for free. Keep in mind that it takes more battery power to start your car in cold weather than it does when it is warm
- Check your windshield wiper fluids. Winter weather conditions can cause your windshield to become dirty faster from road-grime and salt.
- Clean your windows regularly. Clean windows are easier to defrost.
- When you are in snow or icy conditions DO NOT SLAM ON YOUR BREAKS. Slamming on your breaks will cause you to slide out of control.
- Take off slowly from a stop. Some cars have an option where you can switch from sport mode to winter mode. Winter mode starts your car in a higher gear making it easier to accelerate safely.
- Don’t tailgate. In slippery conditions increase your stopping distance.
- Pay attention to the drivers around you. Remember, some drivers may not be accustomed to driving in harsh weather conditions. My husband’s Dad use to tell him, “Drive like everyone else around you is an idiot.” Keep this in my as your drive.
- Slow down. By slowing down you will have more time to react. When you are going faster your car’s tires have less traction.
Don’t Leave Home Without Them
Prepare an Emergency Car Care Kit
- Street Flares
- Something bright colored, if you get in a car accident and your car cannot be seen from the road. The bright colored clothes will help you get potted easily.
- Jumper Cables
- Ice-scraper or a can of de-icer
- Non-perishible food (such as granola bars or energy bars)
- Flash Light
- If you have kids depending on their ages include the following a travel potty, pull-ups, diapers, and wipes)
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