How to prepare your car for the winter or the most spread problems which driver face in the winter

Administrator posted this 30 October 2018

There is a strong difference between driving in the winter and in the summer, and that problems with the car are not so critical and don’t make driver’s life complicated, as the problems with it do in the winter. Anyway, you can avoid or reduce the negative impact of all adversities, which you might face during your driving in the low temperatures. Especially, this article will be for “new drivers”, as it presents a list of life-hacks and even the rules for the operation of the car in the winter.

Replace the summer tyres with the winter tires, beforehand, it must be done. When the temperature is low, the summer rubber comes hard, firm and smooth itself, so it slips better. Poor grip, in winter, threatens to skid even at the slightest turns and increase the braking distance on a wet or slippery road. You must get rid of summer tyres before the first snow. At the first, it is a matter of your safety, because night frosts after a rainy day are no less dangerous. To do this is better, when the temperature is 5 °C. Secondly, you do not have to stand in line for the tire, and you may even save money by replacing the tires in advance.

It is necessary to pay attention to the tire width. Initially, it seems that the wider the tire is, the better the grip would be, but that's not entirely true. A wide tire has a large sliding area, so it is desirable to put narrow wheels, which are allowed by the manufacturer of the car.

Don’t buy antifreeze in bulk. Definitely, this advice is useful for motorists with little driving experience. Are you satisfied with the smell, the quality of the non-freezers and how this liquid match to your car? If you buy in bulk and the antifreeze freezes over, you'll be upset at the money which was blown away. If you are confident in the manufacturer, then, of course, you can buy non-freezers for the whole winter. But here no one will give you guarantees that the manufacturer has not changed the production technology. In this case, just take your time. Replace antifreeze is desired but not necessary, it is the question of quality. Check the density of antifreeze with a special device. The indicator shall be not less than 1.078 g/cu cm, at such density freezing temperature is about -40 °C.

Replace the oil, although not everything is so simple. Oil should be changed in three cases. The first - if the viscosity index of the oil 15 and above, if you need a regular replacement for mileage, and if the annual mileage of the car below the regular.

Buy a new car battery, there are certain conditions too. If the electrolyte density is not less than 1.27 g/cm2 and the battery itself is powerful, no replacement is required. Also in winter, do not let the battery power-drop below 85% – 100%. We already wrote about how to charge the battery, here: Powering the car battery, how much time it takes?

The tire pressure can and should be relived for the better grip. Reducing the pressure to 1,6-1,8 atmospheres will not damage the tires (the wear-out wouldn’t be insignificant), but your drive will be safer. But, if you mainly move around the city or the winters aren't snowy, and cleaning equipment in the city works well, then the tire pressure should correspond to the norm of 2 atmospheres.

Freezing doors is a common problem, which is easy to solve. Wipe the sealing on the doors and periodically lubricate the locks with a special liquid.

Brush for snow cleaning is desirable to store in the trunk. When you open the car, the snow from the roof falls into the cabin. Initially, clean off the snow from the roof, then open the door.

Make a deep cleaning of the car from snow, do not be lazy, as it's a matter of your safety. Clean all signal lights, headlights, mirrors, windshield and rear window of the car.

It is better to warm-up the engine. The engine freezes at low temperatures and severe frosts at night. To save time, when you clean the snow off from the roof, start the car, and after you can continue cleaning.

Shakedown the snow from wheel splash guard, as freezing in the form of ice and sticking of it puts a crimp in the movement of the wheels. It threatens with the beaten-out wheel arch cover and damage of a bumper.

When you start moving, start moving in reverse. This advice is relevant for manual cars, and prevents wheelspin. Back up 1 meter and then continue to move forward.

Second gear is another recommendation for the manual car. Start with the second gear on a snow-covered road. If you have an automatic transmission, as soon as possible starting to move to the second gear. Do NOT drive in neutral. Riding on neutral leads to the demolition of the front axle or rear skid, this is an important aspect of your safety.

Increase the distance, the distance between you and the car in front should be more than usual. A simple rule for your safety, which shouldn’t be forgotten.

The problem of wheelspin must be solved by hand. Carry a small shovel in the trunk, it is compact and not heavy. If your wheels are loaded in snow drifts, and you failed in making them free with the first attempts, to solve the problem in the old way is better.

Impulse braking is a solution for slippery winter roads. This also applies to turns while driving. Note that when you turn to the right you can take out from the road to oncoming traffic. At the left turn, you run the risk to fly out the road.

Whether or not to use the handbrake is a question that worries many drivers on the manual cars. If to do all as usual, then after longtime parking brake pad will freeze. Put on the handbrake, after impulse braking, and then wait a couple of minutes and put on the handbrake. If there is no time to wait, then leave the car in the first gear, but here is an important point, the car should not be on the hill and without autorun. Special and safe “parking mode” on the automatic cars saves owners from this problem.

If you have time, cool the cabin by opening all the doors for a couple of minutes. This will save you from cleaning the frostbite and ice from the glass, you will just sweep the snow. If the temperature at night was too low, and the glass is still frozen, in any case not to water the glass with hot water.

Disabling windscreen wipers or using wipers without the frame will save from the formation of ice on them.

Finally, there are a lot of rules and nuances in the operation of the car in the winter. The simple rule is to follow the rules of the road and maintain your car, and for this, you can download our application inCarDoc.