(WOIO) - Monday night into Tuesday we got a dusting. We all know the big ones are coming. So we checked in with Carissa Giaradina from Firestone Complete Auto Care to get your car winter ready. We're going to hit three areas; under the hood, under the wheel and in the trunk.
Under the hood is all about making sure your battery is strong enough to handle the cold, and fluids. Make sure oil, de-icer washer fluid and especially coolant, not just for hot summer driving, are all good.
"As far as the winter goes if you don't have enough coolant in there you're not going to get the heat that you need in your car. And either your car is not going to get hot enough to regulate or it's going to get too hot," says Giaradina.
Now its time to talk tires. If it's cold enough to see your breath it's time to change to winter tires or at a very minimum check your tread. If you don't have a tread gauge use a penny see how much of Lincoln's head sticks out.
"So half the penny (showing) is good. More than half the penny is bad," Giaradina demonstrated.
Now for the trunk. You should have an emergency roadside kit that includes jumper cables, extra gloves, blanket, flash light, and yes kitty litter.
"A good thing to have is kitty litter or any kind of sand to get you out of any situations where you get stuck. Put it underneath your tire and it will get you right out," says Giaradina.
And with that you and your car are a little more winter ready.
Bridgestone offers a list of effective ways for car owners to stay on the road in the cold.
1. Replace all-season tires with winter tires - If you can see your breath, it's time to switch. Even when there isn't snow on the ground, temperatures lower than 45 degrees cause your all-season tires to stiffen and lose traction, but the latest generations of winter tires remain flexible in freezing temperatures, improving traction and available grip.
2. Don't forget the filters - Oil, fuel, transmission and air filters are important to keep your engine running well. Check your owner's manual to see how often they should be changed.
3. Check your tire pressure monthly - For every 10 degrees the temperature drops, your tires can lose about 1 pound per square inch (PSI) of pressure. Monitor your tire pressure more closely during the winter time.
4. Keep your car washed - Keep the exterior washed and waxed to protect your vehicle from the elements as the seasons change.
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