8 Easy Ways to Winter-Proof Your Car

You can’t stop the cold weather from coming, but you can be ready when it hits. Before the temperatures plummet, take these 8 precautions to winter-proof your car this season.

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  1. Check Your Tire Pressure

    Pressure car

    As temperatures drop, so does your tire pressure. Check your tire pressure throughout the winter and, if necessary, inflate tires to the proper psi recommended in your vehicle’s owner’s manual. Since underinflated tires reduce traction, they're especially dangerous in snowy and icy conditions


    Related: 10 Things You Never Thought to Keep in Your Car

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  2. Clear Foggy Headlights

    Headlights car

    Headlights often become cloudy and yellowed over time, which reduces visibility while driving. If your headlights need some clearing up, you can purchase a DIY restoration kit at an auto store.


    Related: 10 Surprising Tips and Tricks for Dealing with Ice and Snow

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  3. Wax Your Car

    Wax car

    Snow, salt, and dirt from the road can build up during the winter, wreaking havoc on the lower parts of your vehicle. Stave off damage by applying a coat of wax to the car before snow hits.


    Related: 15 Genius Tricks for Keeping Your Car Clean

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  4. Prevent Frozen Side Mirrors

    Side mirror car

    Stash ziplock bags or plastic grocery bags in your glove box during cold snaps. If you’re expecting freezing temperatures, slip a bag over each of your side mirrors so they don’t get icy overnight.


    Related: Expecting Snow? Do These 7 Things ASAP

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  5. Make an Emergency Kit

    Emergency kit

    Always keep emergency items—like jumper cables, flares, and a first aid kit—in your car. When cold weather rolls around, add some warm clothes, gloves, a radio, snacks, an ice scraper, a shovel, and a bag of kitty litter (to provide traction under stuck tires) into the mix as well.


    Related: Prep for Disaster: 10 Things You'll Need in a Home Emergency

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  6. Check Your Tire Tread

    Car penny trick

    Check the tread on your all-season tires to ensure that they’ll offer sufficient traction for snowy conditions. Tire treads should measure at least 3/32 of an inch. To gauge measurement, slip a penny in the groove of the tire with Lincoln's head upside down and facing you; if you can see all of the head, it's time to replace your tires.


    Related: 13 Hacks Every Car Owner Should Know

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  7. Winter-Proof Your Wiper Fluid

    Windshield wiper

    To prevent your car’s windshield wiper fluid from freezing, swap it out for a solution formulated for low temperatures. Also, test your windshield wipers to make sure they're in working order. Imagine being stuck on the highway in a snowstorm with useless wipers!


    Related: The 10 Best Accessories You Can Buy for Your Car

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  8. Test Your Coolant

    Engine coolant

    A mixture of antifreeze and distilled water prevents fluid from freezing in your car's radiator. It’s important to make sure you have enough solution in the coolant reservoir to last through the winter, and that it’s mixed in the correct proportions. Check your owner’s manual for the recommended ratio, and pick up a test kit from your local auto store.


    Related: 7 Tricks Every Driver Needs to Know This Winter

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  9. Be Prepared

    8 easy ways to winterproof your car

    A driver's best defense against winter weather is an ounce of preparedness. Inform family and friends of the proper driving protocol in snowy weather and keep essential supplies in your trunk or glove compartment so you're ready no matter the conditions.

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