Feature

Tip of the week: How to prepare a car for winter

Check battery life; Inspect hoses; Maintain visibility; Protect the exterior

Check battery life. A battery’s cranking power plummets with the temperature, so have a garage check the life of your battery if you’re not ready to replace it.

Inspect hoses. Rubber tends to fail in the cold, so check your cooling system hoses. They shouldn’t have cracks, and should be “firm yet pliable when squeezed.”

Maintain visibility. Fill your wiper-fluid reservoir with a solution that includes an antifreeze agent and always lift your wipers when you park and are expecting frozen precipitation. Turning on stuck wipers can destroy the blades and wiper motor.

Protect the exterior. A fresh coat of wax and regular washings throughout the season will help reduce damage from road salt. Hit your locks with a silicone spray to prevent freezing. Finally, get those snow tires installed if you have them.

Source: Consumer Reports

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