Do You Know How to Prepare Your Vehicle for Cold Temperatures?

by Staff | January 13th, 2020

Harsh winters are a part of life in many parts of Indiana and Illinois. And while they can make roads more dangerous to drive on due to snow and ice, cold temperatures can also do a number on vehicles. Whether you own a car, truck, or SUV, it’s important to protect it from the elements as much as possible to increase its longevity and its reliability.

When vehicles are damaged by winter weather, they become more dangerous to drive and much less reliable, putting drivers at risk of accidents, breakdowns, and even becoming stranded. Keeping your vehicle running its best for years to come and ensuring it’s safe to drive throughout the winter requires taking a few vital steps, which we’ve highlighted in our infographic below.

Avoid These Common Winter Weather Mistakes

You’ve learned what you should do protect your vehicle from the ravages of winter weather. But do you know what you SHOULDN’T do? Mistakes are common when it comes to dealing with cold temperatures, snow, and ice and how they affect vehicles and roads. Avoid the following mistakes this winter to protect your vehicle, yourself, and your loved ones:

  • Don’t try to melt an iced-over windshield with hot water—Hot water makes quick work of even the thickest ice. But don’t be tempted to pour some on your frozen windshield. The rapid change in temperature can cause serious damage to the glass, resulting in cracks.
  • Don’t make sudden and erratic movements to avoid potholes—Potholes are common sights during and after winter weather due to water freezing and expanding in asphalt. And while they can damage your vehicle, you can do even more harm to yourself and to others by swerving or slamming on your brakes to avoid them and causing accidents.
  • Don’t consider a partially clear windshield “good enough”—If you’re in a hurry, you may be tempted to clear only half of your windshield of ice—or even a small porthole. Doing so is extremely dangerous, as it both limits your visibility of the road and also increases the risk that you’ll be unable to see anything due to the sun reflecting off the ice.
  • Don’t drive in uncertain weather—Winter storms can completely shut down cities, let alone highways and interstates. Whether you’re planning on driving around town or across the state, always check the weather forecast before you leave. If it’s calling for snow and ice, be safe and stay home if at all possible.

In addition to avoiding these mistakes, you should also be sure to keep up with routine vehicle maintenance tasks that you would do in any other weather. They include checking coolant levels, ensuring your tires are at their recommended PSI, getting regular oil changes, and not letting your fuel level get too low to prevent ice forming in your fuel lines.

We’re Here for You After a Winter-Related Accident

Some winter driving crashes are caused by drivers who fail to adjust their speed and driving habits to account for snow and ice. Others are caused by drivers who don’t prepare their vehicles for winter weather. If you were hurt in a crash that was caused by either type of negligent driver, you deserve compensation, and the lawyers at Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & Newlin want to help you get it.

Contact us today for a free consultation and to find out how we can help your family.

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