Common Causes of Winter Car Breakdowns

Dec 07, 2017

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Common Causes of Winter Car Breakdowns

Keep your journey running smoothly this winter by avoiding common breakdown issues.  

A breakdown is the bane of any driver's life, no matter what time of year it is. However, a breakdown in winter is especially unpleasant as the cooler temperatures mean that motorists could be waiting for a tow truck in freezing temperatures. While nothing can replace safe driving habits and an emergency kit, you can avoid some winter breakdowns with these tips. Dead Battery It's harder for car batteries to produce a charge in winter, meaning that it may not be able to produce enough energy to start your car when you turn the key. This could mean that you and your vehicle are left stranded in the cold temperatures. Before it gets too cold, it's a good idea to check your battery's voltage with a voltmeter. Around 12.40-12.75 volts is enough to ensure reliable startups. Anything else and it could mean that you should look into getting a new battery. Tires Many motorists are driving around with bald tires without even realizing it. Tires are what keeps us in contact with the road, so it's important to keep them well maintained in winter, especially when the roads are slick and icy. Treads help channel the snow and water away from the tires to help your car grip and maintain traction. Check your tires before winter weather hits, and continue doing so regularly after it gets cold. Make sure that the tread isn't too worn down. You can check this by placing a cent in the center of the tread with Lincoln's head pointed in. If you can see his hair, the tread depth is too low and your tires need to be replaced. Also, ensure that you have your spare tire in the trunk at all times! Fluids Thickening When it gets cold outside, motor oil thickens, and that will make it harder for your car to get all the fluids it needs to run properly. Lack of fluids can even cause your car to overheat - in winter! Get all fluids and oil checked out by your local mechanic. You may need to do a winter oil change and switch to a thinner oil that is rated well for colder temperatures. To ensure your safekeeping on the roads, and quick roadside assistance if things don't go to plan, visit the team at Abatelli Group, Inc. who can fit you with reliable auto insurance in Whitestone, New York.