Subzero temperatures or snowfalls can increase the chances of the car suffering serious mechanical damage, preventing us from driving safely. In this sense, prevention is an essential factor to prevent many components of our vehicle from being damaged as a result of the cold. In this sense, the network of workshops
Confortauto Hankook Masters reminds us of the importance of knowing how we should maintain the vehicle during this time of year to keep our vehicle in perfect condition and thus face winter safely.
1. Battery: One of the mechanical elements of the vehicle that suffers the most from low temperatures is the battery. In fact, low temperatures can increase the possibility of it being discharged. Normally, the battery does not need maintenance, beyond the change at the end of its useful life, which is usually between 3 and five 5. If the battery is in this average age, it is advisable to change it before finding out one morning that the car does not starts or does it with great difficulty. At the slightest symptom, it is better to replace it.
2. Tires: Tires must be in good condition throughout the year. If these do not have the correct pressure or the tread of the rubber is worn, our bond to the asphalt will be unsafe. In winter temperatures drop, it snows and rains more frequently, so it is common to find wet or even icy or snowy asphalt when driving. The revision of the tires is essential at this time to avoid effects such as aquaplaning. We must take into account the pressure recommended by the manufacturer and check it periodically to detect if any tire has lost air. It is also a good idea to regularly check wear and depth. To ensure maximum grip and traction, the tread depth of the tires must not exceed 1.6 millimeters (established legal limit), being advisable to change it when the depth is less than 3 millimeters. Another important aspect that we recommend at this time is the fitting of winter tires. These tires replace the chains when they are mandatory and are the perfect option for driving safely in cold, rainy, ice or snow conditions.
3. Wiper blades and wipers: In cold months it is essential that the windshield wipers are in good working order. There is nothing more uncomfortable than driving on a rainy day with a bad blade that leaves a hazy halo on the windshield. Make sure they are very clean and replace them when they are worn out. Although visually they look good, they can have dry rubber, since sudden changes in temperature, long exposures to the sun and the passage of time play against them. Pour water on the windshield and check that they sweep well, if not, change them. Another important detail is to check if there is enough windshield washer fluid in our tank and if not, fill it up. This will help us defrost the windshield wiper in the morning and prevent breakage of the hoses, pump and fluid container.
4. Liquids: With the mercury to a minimum, there are fluids in the car that run the risk of freezing, as happens, for example, with the one in the windshield washer reservoir. It is also essential to check the level of the coolant since this makes it possible to maintain the optimum temperature of the engine. Another aspect to take into account, especially if you live in areas with sub-zero temperatures, is to check the condition of the coolant. The coolant is in turn antifreeze up to a certain temperature, but with use it loses properties.
5. Break system: With the cold we must also check our braking system, because with low temperatures they lose efficiency. The poor condition of these components translates into longer braking and increased chances of having an accident. It is important to pay attention to the brake pads, as accumulated dirt and moisture can cause squeaking and friction with the brake discs. This can decrease the braking capacity or excessively increase the braking temperature, eventually crystallizing the pads and losing their properties. The possible freezing of the brake fluid is also a factor to take into account with the low temperatures, which can cause its deterioration. The most obvious symptom that this may have happened is that the pedal feels too soft, in which case we recommend checking the problem immediately and, if necessary, replacing the brake fluid until the reservoir is completely filled. If the fluid level drops, you should also check the brake lines and see if they are corroded, since they could have caused leaks or leaks.
6. Air-conditioning system: Far from being an element of pure comfort, the air conditioning system is key to reducing condensation in the passenger compartment and demisting the windows, so its correct operation in this season is of great importance. It is important to check that it works in perfect condition so that, in addition to helping us fight the cold, it offers us maximum visibility. Keep in mind that the heating radiator is extremely easy to clog because of the solid residues that float in the coolant circuit. In this case, the best advice is to go to a trusted workshop to carry out a correct and meticulous cleaning of the heating radiator and the entire cooling circuit of the car.