Winter is coming – ready or not. Preparing your vehicle to take on the Alberta cold is one of the best things you can do to protect both you and your vehicle so you’ll stay safe all winter long.
Check out our handy list below on things you can do to help get your vehicle ready to ride out the season as you make tracks on winter roads.
Switch to Synthetic Oil
It will help your car start in winter temperatures so you won’t be left out in the cold. When temperatures drop, synthetic grade car oils won’t thicken up like conventional oil, allowing it to flow better to reduce engine wear, and extend the life of the engine.
Read what our Auto Expert says
Check Your Fluids, Belts, and Hoses
Regularly checking your vehicle’s oil and fluid levels will help keep your vehicle in good running condition, so that it’s ready to go when you are. And while you’re at it, visually inspect the belts and hoses for cracks, bulges, and leaks. Keep an eye out too, on your fuel gauge since cold weather decreases fuel efficiency. If the tank gets too low in winter, you risk a fuel-line freeze.
Watch the video on how to check your auto fluids.
Check Your Battery
Extreme cold pulls voltage from a battery, making it harder for your vehicle to start. In fact, battery output drops by about half at -18 C. Keeping your battery fully charged – either by driving regularly or by using a battery tender – will help prevent this winter woe. Members get free battery testing and exclusive pricing on new batteries – delivered and installed with our CAA Battery Service.
Winter tires give a better grip and provide up to 50 percent better traction on cold, wet, icy, or frosty roads. Always check your owner’s manual for manufacturer recommendations and make sure you use a set of four identical tires.
Watch the video about choosing the right winter tires.
Check Your Tire Pressure and Tread
Most tires lose one pound per square inch for every 5 C drop in temperature, making it critical to regularly check pressure in winter. An improperly inflated tire can cause excessive wear on your tire’s tread, reduces traction for your car, and uses more gas. You can find the right tire pressure (psi) for your car in the driver-side door jamb, on a sticker in your glove compartment, or in the owner’s manual. Members can stop by select AMA centres and check your tires at our air service stall and top them up for free.
Watch the video on how to check your car tire’s tread. Hint: all you need is a toonie.
Winter Wiper Blades
The rubber on winter blades is designed for extreme weather conditions and will help protect your windshield against ice, sleet, and snow so you can see the road clearly.
Installing wiper blades is a snap to do, too. Watch the video to find out how to change your blades.
Get a Seasonal Check-up
Get a complete inspection with expertly trained auto techs at any Approved Auto Repair Service (AARS) facility location across Alberta. All work is backed by a 12-month or 20,000 km warranty on most parts and services. Learn more and find a location near you.