As the weather continues its cold streak, snowstorms and icy conditions are inevitable over the next couple of months. While snuggling inside with a cozy blanket and a furry friend is ideal, colder temperatures mean your home and car will need some extra care and maintenance. Keep the cold temperatures at bay by making sure your car and home are operating to the best of its ability with these handy tips.
Ensure the longevity of your car by doing the following things:
- Check your tires. Colder temperatures can make the air pressure on tires decrease, so verify that they’re properly inflated. Also ensure that your tires have adequate tread so they can handle snowy weather.
- Look at your windshield wipers and confirm that they’ll be able to handle snow and slush. Replace wiper fluid with one that is rated for cold temperatures.
- Keep your gas tank at least half full to prevent your gas line from freezing.
- Know the features of your car. Each car has different safety features, such as antilock brakes or traction control. Test each feature so you know how your car functions.
- Have an emergency kit in your car that includes a flashlight, phone charger, jumper cables, glass scraper, blankets, extra set of clothes, a first aid kit and other necessary items.
- Warm your car before driving to prevent strain on your engine but make sure you don’t do it in an enclosed space, like a garage.
For your homes, most of the maintenance required is preemptive in the case of a terrible storm:
- Prevent frozen pipes. Insulate exterior pipes by covering them with newspaper or plastic bags to keep them from getting frosted over.
- Clean out your gutters. Leftover leaves and other debris will build up snow or ice during the winter months. Once the snow or ice melts it could leak into the home and cause water damage.
- Replace furnace filters. This will ensure that your heating system is operating at its full functionality and improving the home’s air quality.
- Have safe alternate heating systems available on the off chance that your primary source breaks down or malfunctions.
- Test your carbon monoxide detectors. Check the expiration date and replace if necessary, they typically last around three to five years.