It won’t be long before the mercury drops and the cold winds blow off Lake Michigan, if that time hasn’t already arrived. Driving safely during the fall months requires more than just cautious driver behavior — your car also needs some attention.
Read through this list & then make it easy on yourself; just bring your car to Brown Motors and we’ll get it ready for the cold!
Here are 10 practical tips to help get your car ready for fall.
1. Check the brakes and tires. Cold rainy weather with freezing temps and other hazards require good stopping power. That means good brakes and tires. If your tires have wear bars showing you need to replace the tires. Drive up to Brown Motors Service Department & let the experts inspect your tires at no charge. Also check the tire pressure, as tire pressure drops when the outside temperatures plummet. Keep the pressure at levels recommended by your manufacturer.
2. Check the lights. Walk around the outside of the car and check the operation of all lights: headlights, tail lights, parking lights, brake lights and emergency flashers. Replace all broken bulbs and those that have stopped working. Make sure all lights are clean. If you own an older vehicle with sealed-beam headlamps, you might want to up grade to halogen lamps for improved visibility and safer driving.
3. Replace wiper blades. The purpose of wiper blades is to completely clear the windshield. Cracked or worn blades won’t do an adequate job. Check the blade’s rubber to ensure it is flexible and operate the wipers to see that the blades clear the glass. Replace worn blades. Brown Motors has a wiper blade for your vehicle.
4. Make sure heater/defroster work. Driving with an improperly working heater isn’t fun or safe. Driving with fogged-up windows is an accident waiting to happen. Check front and rear window defrosters to ensure proper working condition. If necessary, call Brown Motors service department at 439-3673 to have your heater and defroster systems repaired.
5. Have the battery checked. A fully charged battery is necessary to start the car in cold weather. Have the battery and charging system inspected by a Brown Motors trained technician who can replace it if required. If you see signs of corrosion on the battery terminals or cable ends or if you spot loose connections, your battery needs attention.
6. Inspect under the hood. Looking under the hood will allow you to identify any obvious signs of wear or items that need replacing or fixing. Look for leaks, cracks or loose clamps in the cooling system and squeeze the hoses to see if any are spongy-feeling or brittle. Inspect the underside of drive belts for fraying. If you’ve noticed any engine noises, experienced sputtering or other engine problems, have a mechanic at Brown Motors thoroughly inspect the engine and make any necessary repairs.
7. Change oil and air filter. If the oil is dirty or you’re at your recommended oil change time, change the oil. Also check the air filter to ensure that it is clean enough to allow for proper operation. If you can’t see light through it when you hold it up to a 60-watt bulb, it’s time to replace the air filter. At Brown Motors Quick Lube you can chose regular oil, semi-synthetic or full synthetic oil; plus, the multi-point inspection is always included.
8. Refill cooling system. Make sure you have the right fill of antifreeze so things work properly in the cold.
9. Check all fluid levels. This includes washer fluid, along with transmission, brake and power steering fluids. Make sure they are all at or above minimum safe levels.
10. Get a good car wash/detail. It may sound crazy, spiffing up your car with an extra-special wash or even a detail, but when your vehicle is clean, it’s easier to spot any potential problems. A good wax job will protect your vehicle from salty winter driving. Let the experts at Brown Motors Auto Detailing help you protect your vehicle.
Brown Motors Quick Lube — Oil Change & Tire Rotation — No Appointment
Just bring your car into Brown Motors Quick Lube and let the experts get your car ready for cold weather driving! Every oil change includes a complementary Multi-point inspection with fluids topped off.