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Winterproof Your Northbound Car this Winter

Posted on January 5, 2012

The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has some tips for drivers that plan on driving in more typical winter conditions than you find in Florida. Florida auto accident attorneys want to ensure you get to your destination safely, so especially if you plan to travel with your loved ones, you’ll want to make sure your vehicle is in top condition for the road.

The NHTSA suggests drivers:

  • Visit the mechanic for routine maintenance.
  • Make sure the mechanic checks all hoses, any leaks, and provides needed repairs.
  • Check the battery; when it is cold, the battery power diminishes. In the cold weather, it takes more power to start an engine. Even for an electric car, you can travel shorter distances on a battery charge when it’s cold. The mechanic should check the battery’s voltage.
  • Have the mechanic check the belts, the charging system, and the battery cables.
  • Electric vehicles need backup systems for power, so keep gasoline in the vehicle.
  • Frozen coolant can expand the engine, damaging the block. Make sure there is the right kind of coolant to withstand winter temperatures.
  • A mixture of 50/50 water and coolant usually works for most of the country. Make sure coolant is refreshed occasionally to remove dirt and rust.
  • Check the cooling system for leaks and drain the coolant if it hasn’t been flushed in awhile. There can be a buildup of rust over time.

The NHTSA also reminds drivers that tires need to be inspected regularly for tread and inflation, which is recommended by the manufacturer in the PSI measurement (pounds per square inch).

Source: http://www.nhtsa.gov/CA/12-21-2011; http://www.safercar.gov/staticfiles/safercar/pdf/wintertips.pdf