Top 5 Common Cold Weather Car Problems
A change in temperature can bring about new, or compound old problems with your vehicle. Check out these Powerbuilt Tools car maintenance and tool tips from Eric the Car Guy. Eric is an ASE Certified Master Technician, so he knows his stuff.
Here are 5 things you might be on the lookout for when the weather turns cold:
Probably the #1 issue I see when the weather turns cold is with batteries. Batteries operate because of an electrochemical reaction that is affected by temperature.
When the weather gets cold, it slows down the reaction, and as a result, the battery doesn’t perform as well. If you have a weak battery, it will get even weaker, and possibly not start your vehicle when it gets cold.
Be sure to get your battery checked before the weather turns cold to avoid a no start on a cold day.
If you live in an area where you get ice and snow, I’m sure you’ve had to clean off your windshield and windows before setting out. Something I get asked about from time to time is how to remove ice from a windshield. DO NOT pour hot water on a frozen windshield. The temperature difference can cause the windshield to crack or break.
If you’re trying to remove ice from your windshield, start early. Start your vehicle and let it run with the heat on high and in defrost mode. The recirculatemode will also help speed the process. Then scrape the ice from the windshield. The longer you can let the vehicle run and heat up the better.
I can’t count the number of times a vehicle has come into the shop with windshield wipers that don’t operate in the winter. Many times this is due to trying to operate the windshield wipers when they are frozen to the windshield.
Avoid this at all costs!
Often times the components of the wipers are broken when you attempt this. You can avoid a costly repair simply by checking and freeing the wipers before you use them in the winter. See the above Ice tips
Have you ever tried to open your car door in the winter and it was frozen shut? Sometimes the ice just covers your vehicle and it’s unavoidable, but sometimes moisture causes the door seal to freeze to the door making it difficult, if not impossible to open.
A good way to prevent this ice from taking hold is to spray this rubber seal with silicone spray that you can find at your local auto parts store.The silicone will act as a barrier and prevent the ice from forming and freezing the door shut. Try it sometime, it really works.
I might have mentioned this first since I’m a self-proclaimed ‘tire junkie’. For me, tires are the most important part of the vehicle. Everything about your vehicle touches the road in 4 spots (usually) and we call them tires.
If you live in an area that experiences ‘real winter’, I strongly recommend a dedicated set of winter tires. They will make your winter driving much safer than driving with all season tires. Winter tires are specifically built for winter driving. In my experience, there is nothing better for winter traction than a good set of winter tires.
I hope these tips help you for when the weather turns cold. Take care of your vehicle and it will take care of you, especially in the cold.
Be Safe, Have Fun, Stay Dirty
- Tags: How To's
- Andy Somerville