1. Examine your windshield wipers for wear
A fresh set of wiper blades are essential for poor driving conditions. It won’t matter if your vehicle runs or not if you can’t see the road.
2. Have your cooling system serviced
A proper cooling system service includes cleaning and flushing the system and refilling with new antifreeze/coolant. Be sure to ask for a leak test!
3. Inspect all hoses and your belts
Although minor in cost, these components are vital for keeping you on the road. If any of them show signs of aging such as cracking or rotting replace now or you’ll kick yourself later.
4. Stop in to have your brakes inspected
In hazardous conditions, stopping can be more important than going. Make sure your rotors, calipers and pads are all functioning properly with a brake inspection from your local ASE certified shop.
5. Check your charging system
Have your battery and charging system checked for proper performance. Many auto parts stores will do this service free of charge. (Pun intended.)
6. Don’t just kick your tires
Tires are the first thing keeping you and your ride from the pavement. If you live in areas where there are harsh winter conditions a nice set of snow tires is vital. If you live in a more moderate climate a good set of all season tires should do the trick. And don’t forget to make sure you have a quality spare tire that’s properly inflated! I highly recommend practicing changing a tire before you need to. This way you’ll be familiar with the process and the tools needed to do the job efficiently.
7. Be prepared like a boy scout
It’s always a good idea to carry emergency equipment on board your vehicle, including jumper cables, a flashlight, extra batteries, flares, a first aid kit, a fully charged cell phone and some cash for emergencies. And don’t forget to keep plenty of gas in your vehicle. You don’t want to be on E with Old Man Winter breathing down your neck!