Happy November to our John's Automotive Care La Mesa customers; pardon us for saying a well-used phrase, but Winter Is Coming. Given our past knowledge of what winter road conditions can bring, there is no better time like a November blog to talk about all the ways you can protect & prep your vehicle for the upcoming winter months. Winter-proofing one's vehicle is key to saving you money and time in the long run! We present our top five ways to prepare your vehicle for winter.
Take a walk around the exterior of your vehicle. Check to make sure that all your headlights and taillights are clear and sturdy and the bulbs put out plenty of light. As we head into the darker months, visibility is critical. The polycarbonate material that makes up most headlights is often sun-damaged from the hot summer months. From scratches to UV rays beating down. Having your headlights or taillights cloudy significantly impacts your visibility on the road. And it also risks others' safety on the streets; other drivers and individuals walking are less likely to see you. Remember: See and Be Seen is extremely important.
Due to the increased challenges of slowing down and stopping on wet/icy roads, your vehicle's braking system simply has to work harder. Factor in dirt particles and debris that are more abundant on the streets during these months & more particles may find their way inside the braking system. The colder temperatures can cause these particles to stick to the brake pads when winter strikes - these frozen debris can cause damage to the rotors as well. During these upcoming colder months, it's essential to check your brakes before they become more expensive and time-consuming. While our ASE-Certified or Master-Certified auto mechanics are hard at work on your brake repair, the rest of our team can help you get back to your busy day. Whether that means shuttling you to work or providing a rental car at a discounted rate, we will try our best to ensure your schedule goes uninterrupted.
Ignoring one's brakes can lead to severe damage to your braking system, cut down one's ability to stop correctly, and cause accidents. Brake inspection before and during these winter months is your best bet to stay safe.
Prep car tires for winter.
To best prepare your vehicle's wheels for more challenging road conditions, plan to rotate tires at your trusted auto shop to even your tires' tread wear. Another option is to invest in winter tires; they are specifically designed with an aggressive tread to eliminate build-up for your safety and anti-slip.
Your vehicle's battery is one of the most common parts to "die" in the winter season. Your vehicle's battery won't always warn you before it fails, but here are common signs to watch for, especially in the coming months:
Engine starts more slowly
Your battery is more than three years old
Headlights glow a dim yellow instead of pure white
Electronic accessories fail
Your car's horn sounds unusual
The battery case is swollen or cracked
You notice the smell of sulfur/rotten eggs
Freezing temperatures tend to slow the chemical reactions occurring inside a lead-acid battery. When this happens, the battery's ability to perform goes down. A cold engine causes the engine oil to thicken as it gets colder; as it gets thicker, the battery has to work extra hard to warm it up for good results. Prepare yourself now to get a battery inspection, and Our ASE Certified Technicians will check your car battery and let you know if there are any problems! Many times we will prevent you from getting stuck in a challenging & cold situation!
Winter emergency kit.
With 17% of all car crashes occurring during winter, it's essential to have an emergency kit for these unexpected situations. Since holiday travels are soon upon us, be sure to put together an emergency kit to store in your car. Having a first aid kit is essential to an emergency kit. Ensure your kit has band-aids, antiseptic wipes, gauze pads, antibiotic cream, and medical wraps in case of minor injuries. Extra items to add to your first aid kit are sanitizing wipes, feminine products, sunblock, insect repellent, and of course, toilet paper. Keep in mind that you could be stranded for an extended period, so pack water and snacks that are non-perishable, like granola bars, nuts, dried fruit, and hard candy, which are also good to have on hand. Don't forget how far a clean pair of clothes can go!
If you are uncertain about your vehicle's upcoming winter maintenance, schedule an appointment with John's Automotive Care in La Mesa. Our qualified auto mechanic team provides thorough professional auto repair services, and our entire team prides itself on keeping you updated throughout your service. Call John's Automotive Care, or schedule an appointment online with us today to experience the JAC (John's Automotive Care) difference. We are located at 7447 University Ave, La Mesa, CA 91942.