Driving in the winter brings unique risks, but with some preparation, your truck can be ready to weather the cold. Getting your truck ready for the challenges of winter will make your driving safer and reduce the risk of breakdowns that require your vehicle to be towed. Prepare your truck to face harsh winter conditions with these steps.
Check Your Fluid Levels
It’s always a good idea to periodically check fluid levels under the hood, and the change of season is a good reminder. Checking your fluids is most important in winter because cold temperatures can stress your engine. Check your oil levels—and get an oil change if you’re due. Check the ratio of water to antifreeze, and make adjustments, if necessary. Typically, the ratio should be about 50/50, but if you are going to be driving in extremely cold conditions, consider adjusting to 60% antifreeze, 40% water. Check your washer fluid as well and top it up with washer fluid that contains antifreeze.
Test Your Battery
Winter is not the right time to push your battery to its limit. Engines require more power from the battery to start when the weather is cold, so batteries that are testing low won’t cut it. Use a home battery testing system to see how much life is left in your battery or take it to a mechanic for a test.
Update Your Emergency Kit
You should always have an emergency kit in your truck, in cases of accidents or breakdowns. If you already have an emergency kit, check it to be sure it has everything you need and replace anything that has expired, such as medicine. If you don’t have one yet, gather first aid supplies, blankets, a flashlight, and gloves. If you’re going to be driving in the mountains, be sure that you also have tire chains with your kit.
If you do face a breakdown—during winter or any other season—call Barnett’s Towing. We offer towing across the state, even in snowy mountain passes and other remote locations. Dial our Phoenix towing service 24 hours per day at (800) 722-2302.