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Money Matters Blog

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Top Tips for Winterizing Your Car

It seems no matter how hard some wish, winter comes to Michigan every year. The cold weather and treacherous conditions that visit our beloved state might be great for winter sports, but they can wreak havoc on your vehicle. Even rough and tough SUVs are susceptible to damage, but there are precautions you can take to help stop the problems before they occur.

Seeing is pretty important! 
It may seem like a no-brainer that you need good visibility when driving, but in winter weather conditions it can be even more important for have a clear view of your surroundings. Making sure you have new wiper blades and plenty of washer fluid are probably the least expensive and most overlooked things that can help you have a safer car this season. You can find more tips on keeping sight of the road at and find wiper blade ratings on

Where the rubber meets the ice. 
Slippery conditions are unavoidable unless you stay at home. This isn’t really an option for most people, so it’s important to make sure your car is for top shape to handle the roads. Checking the tread on your tires is very important in safe winter driving. You might be surprised at the difference in stopping distance that winter tires can make! Consumer Reports has a good article on how winter tires can help keep you safe: Comparing Stopping Distances in Snow. If you’re not sure you want to make the investment in a completely separate set of tires, ask your mechanic or a knowledgeable friend to take a look at your tires for their expert opinion.

Don’t lose power. 
As we all know, starting your car is a vital part of driving, so it’s important to make sure your battery is in good shape. Understanding how batteries work can help you to better diagnose when your battery is going bad. You can learn about how they work in this article on Many people don’t even think about checking their battery unless there’s a problem (ie, their car doesn’t start), so it might be helpful to set a calendar reminder to check it (or have it checked) before the colder temperatures hit. When in doubt, take it in to have it looked at by a professional.

It’s easy to continue on with your day-to-day driving and trust that your regular oil changes and vehicle inspections will keep your car running smoothly, but it’s important to remember that we live in a climate that would affect any machine’s ability to function. Doing research online and asking your mechanic about precautions you can take this winter will help keep you safe and save you money.

No matter how cold it gets though, just remember… spring is always just a few months away!

*Community Financial does not endorse the information, content, presentation or accuracy, nor make any warranty, expressed or implied, regarding the websites and/or apps mentioned above.

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