Brown Motors and Winter Safety

Harsh winter weather is a reality! Your car needs to be prepared to perform quickly & keep you safe in the snow, sleet and other cold and nasty conditions we experience here in Northern Michigan.

While it’s a no-brainer that regular maintenance prevents seasonal break-downs, a whopping 70 percent of motorists admit to not winterizing their cars, according to the Car Care Council.

Be sure to follow the steps below to ensure smooth running for your ride, even in winter’s blustery breezes.

Visit the experts at Brown Motors for the preventative maintenance that will help your vehicle perform at optimum levels in a variety of conditions.

Brown Motors factory trained technicians will perform:

1. Tire and Brake Check – The ability to gain traction and brake are imperative during the winter driving season.

Summer travel gives brake pads a heavy workout, resulting in the removal of thin layers. Now is the time to check pads, shoes, rotors, drums, calipers, wheel cylinders, brake hardware and the parking brake for wear and tear.

Closely inspect the tread and sidewall areas of tires for uneven or irregular wear. In addition, excessive edge wear, center wear and shoulder wear can act as an indicator for other trouble spots on your vehicle. It’s also important to ensure correct air pressure at all times in order to prevent premature wear. Be sure to check the spare as well. If replacements are needed, Brown Motors offers a complete lineup of tires and winter tires from BFGoodrich, Bridgestone, Continental, Dunlop, Firestone, General, Goodyear, Hankook, Kelly, Kumho, Michelin, Uniroyal and Yokohama brands.

2. Battery Check – Summer heat does the most damage to battery life and is why they often fail in the winter. Have your battery tested to make sure it’s fully charged. Also, check for corroded terminals and a bulging or cracked case.

3. Windshield Check – A strong windshield is vital with the added pressure of snow, strong winds, and freezing temperatures. Make sure yours can withstand the elements.

4. Antifreeze Check – Check the amount of antifreeze concentration in your radiator -antifreeze should be flushed and refilled every two years. Also, hoses and belts should be examined for wear and tear.

5.  Winter Washer Fluid Check – Regular washer fluids can freeze in the washer reservoir or on the windshield while driving. Special deicer formulas will stay liquid in the reservoir at temperatures as low as -34°F.

6. Wiper check – When snow, hail and ice are falling from the sky and blurring visibility, it’s essential to have properly functioning wiper blades.  Ford & Mopar both feature winter wiper blades are constructed to eliminate exposed parts and to resist snow- and ice-clogging.

7. Regular Oil Changes -Ensure your engine oil has the correct viscosity in order to endure cold weather. Engine oil should be changed or replenished at recommended intervals. Low or dirty fluids affect how an engine and its components perform and could potentially cause engine damage under extreme conditions.

Brown Motors recommends the few steps listed below to keep you safe on the road & maintain the appearance of your vehicle:

1. Maintain car’s coat – Salt and other materials used on roadways can have ill effects on your car’s coat. It’s important to stay on a regular cycle of washing and waxing to prevent rust and unnecessary erosion of the car’s paint.

2. Remove excess snow and ice from windows and lights – Keep a windshield scraper and small broom for ice and snow removal in your vehicle. As a safety precaution, clean off your entire car after it snows, whether you’re leaving your home or returning.

3. Keep essential tools on board – Be sure to leave room in your vehicle for essential winter items, including: a spare tire, ice scraper, hammer, deicer, flashlight, small broom, etc. in case of an unexpected need.

Specific information on service recommendations for your vehicle is available at Brown Motors. Be sure to ask the experts at Brown Motors if you have any questions!

Winter driving in Northern Michigan is a challenge. Be safe! You can count on Brown Motors for all your automotive needs! If you have any more questions regarding your vehicle check Brown Motors Service FAQ or Car Care 101.

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