Basic Car Maintenance and Winter

With winter coming or in some places already here we need to check our cars for winter use. I lived in the mountains for 15 years and it’s certainly a different life style. You have space and freedom of movement and where I lived privacy. Living in the city or some county areas, you have gas and lights provided by companies that fix it when there is an outage. You high county or mountain people know it’s only you and family.

One thing I learned fast was, snow chains and how to put them on (ugh) messy and dirty. I lived 2 miles off road and it wasn’t fun. So keeping your car in tip top shape is essential all the time, but in the winter it could be your life line.

So here are a few things you should check even in the city.

  • Batteries (all cars or running snow equipment)
  • Battery cables (Clean, grease and tighten)
  • Oil (no oil no run)
  • Filters
  • Check all belts for worn spots or cracks
  • Windshield wipers and keep extra on hand (I did)
  • Hoses Check for leaks or cracks or if it’s spongy
  • Spark plus (tighten spark plugs and make sure the leads are on securely)
  • Distributor Cap (check the points)
  • Anti freeze (a biggie) in the winter for the radiator
  • Ice scraper (short and long one)
  • Check tire pressure
  • Emergency flares and triangles
  • Fire Extinguisher
  • Flashlight and spare batteries
  • Maps
  • Duct tape and Electrical tape
  • Frozen locks are also a problem everywhere even if you don’t smoke carry matches so that you can heat up your key. I used hot water since it was available.

Never throw hot water on your windshield when frozen, use an ice scraper. One thing I learned also if your car is parked in the snow overnight and it doesn’t start in the morning check the exhaust pipe it could be under snow.

Even if you can’t or don’t know how to replace broken parts, someone else might.

Am sure most of us have tool boxes in our cars and some spare parts I know you can’t carry everything but use your instincts. What have you replaced or haven’t replaced lately?

If you can’t do any of the checking, please spend the money to have a garage check your car. It can save a lot of headaches and your life.

Preparedness Mom



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2 Responses to Basic Car Maintenance and Winter

  1. Matt in Oklahoma says:

    Good article, I have some added thoughts:
    I always keep the old belts and one of the old windshield wipers with the tire changing stuff. I also might add below zero windsheild washer fluid, not the cheap stuff. Now is the time to add it and start pushing the cheaper stuff out of the wiper fluid system so when it does get cold it isnt frozen. Add a blanket/sleeping bag, cold weather boots and socks to the go bag, BOB/GMHB.
    This is the time to get sandbags/de-icer pellets, shovels and all that stuff before the masses realize a storms coming and it’s all sold out and figure out where you are gonna carry it in the vehicle.
    Throw in a chain/strap and know where to hook it up on your car going both directions. If I pull you out of the snow/mud I make the driver hook it up to their vehicle so any damage sustained is on them. Ticks off alot of the sheeple ladies but oh well thats the breaks, you want my help you go by my rules and vise versa.

  2. Steve@Tocowarranty says:

    Give yourself a little extra time to ensure your vehicle is road ready. Allow at least 10 minutes to clear ice and snow from your windows, windscreen and mirrors. Don’t set off until you have clear visibility.

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