It's that time of year - winterizing your vehicle

Every year, your vehicle needs to be ready for our AZ winter. The last thing we Gilbert drivers want is to get stranded out in the cold in AZ. We need our vehicles to be safe and reliable. It's a good idea to get caught up on any neglected maintenance items anytime – but the stakes are higher in the winter for AZ .

There are some specific and necessary things that we need to do to have our vehicle ready for winter. The most obvious is having the antifreeze checked. If the antifreeze protection is not set correctly it can't properly protect your engine, radiator and hoses from freezing. If your vehicle does not seem to be making enough heat to keep you warm, your antifreeze level may be low or you could have a thermostat problem. Get it checked out at Spectrum Car Care Center in Gilbert. If you are due for a cooling system service, now is a perfect time to have it done.

In the cold AZ rainy months we always worry about being able to stop in time when it's slick out on Scottsdale area roads. The first thing for Gilbert drivers to remember is to slow down and allow plenty of room to stop. A thorough brake inspection at Spectrum Car Care Center in Gilbert will reveal if the pads or any other parts need replacing. Check with your Spectrum Car Care Center service advisor to see if it is time to replace your brake fluid. It accumulates water over time which really messes with your stopping power.

It is also advisable to have your battery tested. A battery's cranking power really drops with the temperature. If your battery is weak in the fall, it may not be up to winter in AZ.

You should always have a blanket or something to keep you and your passengers warm if you get stranded when it's cold in AZ. If you will be leaving the Scottsdale area and venturing away from civilization, pack more items such as food and water to help you survive. Keeping at least half a tank of gas is a good idea if you get stuck and need to run the vehicle to keep warm, and it will help keep your gas lines from freezing up.

It's a really good idea for Scottsdale drivers to replace their wiper blades in the fall before the AZ winter storms. If you live where there's a lot of snow and ice in AZ, you might want a special winter blade that resists freezing up. And be sure to have enough windshield washer fluid.

The final thing for Gilbert to consider is their tires. Any tire can lose pressure over time – up to one pound every six or eight weeks. For every 10 degrees F/5.6 degrees C, the temperature drops in Gilbert you lose another pound of pressure. So if it was 80°F/26.7°C outside in Gilbert when you checked your tire pressure two months ago and now it's 40°F/4.4°C, you could be down 5 pounds of pressure. That's enough to be a safety issue and it's also hard on your fuel economy. You may need special winter tires as well. Your Spectrum Car Care Center tire professional can help you find the right tire design for your Gilbert expected road conditions.

If you're getting winter tires in Gilbert, it is always best to put them on all four wheels. If you are only getting two, it might be best to put them on the rear – even if you have a front-wheel drive or four-wheel drive vehicle. This is a very important safety measure recommended by AZ tire manufacturers. Sliding or fish-tailing on ice and snow is a matter of not having enough traction at the rear end. That is why your newest tires should probably always be on the rear. Check with your friendly and knowledgeable Spectrum Car Care Center service advisor.

 

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