BELLEVUE – As forecasts around much of Washington and North Idaho predict frost, flurries and even heavy snow in the next few days, AAA reminds drivers how to prepare for what could be a long season of winter driving with these tips and reminders.
Now is the perfect time for you or a trusted auto technician to run through the Winter Car Care Checklist to help you prevent some of the most common breakdowns AAA handles during cold weather months.
- Battery and Charging System
- To start in the winter, vehicle engines require a fully charged battery in good condition. Test your vehicle’s battery strength; make sure terminals and cable ends are corrosion-free with tight connections.
- Many vehicles have been driven less during the pandemic. If your vehicle hasn’t been driven in a while, you may encounter battery issues. Be sure to check it well before you need to use your vehicle.
- Inspect drive belts and engine hoses for cracks, leaks or loose clamps.
- Tires: Type, Tread & Pressure
- In areas with heavy winter weather, snow tires on all four wheels provide the best winter traction. All-season tires work well in light-to-moderate snow conditions provided they have adequate tread depth.
- Replace any tire that has less than 3/32-inches of tread.
- Regularly check the pressure on all four tires. Pressures drop with temperatures. The proper levels are in the owner’s manual or listed on a sticker typically found on the driver’s side door jam.
- Check engine air filter. It may need replacing after summer’s smoky skies.
- Top off all fluids: antifreeze, transmission, brake, power steering and windshield washer fluids
- Replace windshield wiper blades.
- Make sure headlights, brake lights and turn signals are working. Replace any burnt out bulbs
- Test brakes to ensure all components are in good working order
- Carry an emergency road kit specifically equipped for winter weather
AAA has all your winter driving resources in one place www.aaa.com/winter, including what items to pack in that emergency road kit, tips for driving on ice and snow, advice on what to do during a break down.
About AAA Washington
AAA Washington has been serving members and the traveling public since 1904. The organization provides a variety of exclusive benefits, including roadside assistance, discounts, maps and personalized trip planning, to its 1.2 million members. In addition, its full-service travel and insurance agencies provide products and services for members and the public. Additional information is available through the company’s stores in Washington and northern Idaho, at www.aaa.com/, or by calling 1-800-562-2582.