When temperatures start dropping and you have to go outside, what do you do? Probably bundle up in some extra layers, maybe even a scarf and gloves. Well sadly, our vehicles can’t bundle themselves up in heavy coats to prepare for cold weather conditions. Therefore, many of them tend to have more issues in the colder, winter months. We realize that we have fairly mild weather during the winter, but some years temps can get well below freezing each night, which puts a strain on your vehicle if it’s parked outside. Despite subzero temperatures here in the South, we still have to whip out a credit card to scrap our windshield every so often. What can cold weather do to your vehicle? The following are some common car problems you may encounter (but hopefully not):
This is possibly the most common car problem that you are likely to experience in winter. When temperatures drop below freezing (even overnight), your car battery can get overworked when starting the engine. Your car battery also tends to power more systems in the winter- think heating and headlights since it gets darker sooner. In the long run, your battery’s capacity is likely to reduce. It’s worth checking your battery’s capacity to make sure it can pull through the cold season. This will help you avoid a host of other car problems that are associated with dead car batteries.
In freezing cold temperatures, car fluids such as oil and transmission fluid could possibly thicken which then causes the fluids to move less freely within your car’s systems. When you first crank your vehicle for the day, leave your car’s engine running for at least 10 minutes to let the engine warm up. If you need your fluid levels checked, bring your vehicle in to Hoover Automotive, your home for auto repair in Hoover, AL.
Wiper failure is another common car problem in colder months. Whether from inclement weather or from freezing over, wiper blades can stop working temporarily. Since the blades are made from rubber, pressure from ice and sleet is likely to wear them down. Before trying to use your windshield wipers to help clear your windshield in the mornings, use your defrost and heat settings for a few minutes to ensure that the blades won’t get stuck and so that they will be more effective.
When temperatures are low, the tire pressure of your car can also fluctuate. You may have already noticed your tire pressure light coming on on your dash- sometimes this will resolve on its own as the temperature goes up, but if it doesn’t, you’ll need to check the air pressure and air up the tires that need it. Neglected low tire pressure can lead to irregular wear and tear, something that shortens the lifespan of your tires. In addition, it could possibly cause a blowout during your drive.
We definitely aren’t trying to worry you, but instead simply prepare you and make you aware of what you may face this winter. So that if all of your tires say they’re low, or your battery dies, you’ll know why. And the good news is that all of these potential issues are easily rectified by an auto repair trip to Hoover Auto in Hoover, AL. Contact us today to go ahead and get your vehicle ready for more of the cold temperatures we’ve already experienced so far.