12-14-22

5 Simple Ways To Get Your Car Ready for Winter

For the majority of the year, driving conditions are pretty tepid. But the true test of your integrity as a car owner, and the quality of your car comes during the winter months. This is when you can truly get punished for not taking care of your car unless you take care of the necessary winter car prep. Between harsh winter weather and the toll the cold, ice, snow, and salt can take, you really have to step up your winter car care game to get your vehicle winter ready. 

Winter Car Care Checklist

We don’t want to see you or your car on the side of the road this winter season. The best way to avoid any issues is to make sure your car is ready to take on whatever the next few months have in store. So before things get really rough, here are 5 simple winter car care tips that will help you and your car be ready for the colder months ahead. 

Juice Up Your Battery

auto battery test
Having to wait for a jump in the middle of the cold and possibly snow is up there with the worst things to happen in winter. If you don’t check your battery before the cold weather sets in, you’re really taking a gamble. The extreme cold that we tend to see can make it difficult for your battery to operate. And the last thing you want is to come back to your car left in a cold parking lot and find it dead leaving you with no heat. The best advice you’ll get today is to get a volt test on your battery now. This will tell you what the health of your battery looks like and whether or not you should invest in a new battery. 

Maintain Your Tires

winter tires
When it comes to driving in winter, the quality of your tires is paramount. But it’s not just about what kind of tires you have but keeping an eye on your tire pressure as well. Investing in winter tires or all-season tires is a great idea and one we highly recommend. You want something that you can rely on for snow, rain, mud, and anything else you may encounter this year. However, something that gets overlooked often is tire pressure. As the air gets colder, tire pressure can drop up to one pound per square inch with every 10-degree drop. Keep an eye on your tire pressure and make sure you fill them if they are looking low. 

Check Your Fluids

oil change
Every fluid in your car is going to help it perform the best it can during the colder months. For this reason, it’s very important that all of your fluid levels are good and fresh. Change your oil and filters if it’s coming near time, flush and refill your coolant/antifreeze, and fill your windshield wiper fluid. Doing all of these now will ensure that your car works the way it should even when temperatures drop. 

Wash Your Car

car wash
This may seem like a weird thing to do, but it’s surprisingly important. However, this is something that you should do throughout the winter months. As more snow hits the roads, the county will salt those roads in an effort to keep them as clear as possible. But that salt will also end up on your car, especially all over your undercarriage. While the salt really helps the roads, it can wreak havoc on your car and cause rust. That is unless you give it a good wash after a big snow. Both an automatic and manual wash will work, as long as you can hit your undercarriage well. 

Pack an Emergency Kit

Winter emergency kit
Everything is all fun and games until your car dies in the middle of a snowstorm. Whether you slid on ice or something happened with your engine, or maybe even ran out of gas, having an emergency kit may just save your life. Depending on the weather and where you are, you definitely need to be prepared for anything. Here are some things you should have packed: 

  • First-aid kit
  • Jumper cables
  • Snow brush and ice scraper
  • Flares
  • Multi-tool with a knife
  • Portable charger
  • Air pump
  • Shovel
  • Cat litter or sand
  • Candle and lighter
  • Thermal blanket
  • Snacks and water

 

Stay Safe Out There

Winter can be a crazy time, but making your vehicle winter ready ahead of time can go a long way. These are just a couple of things you can do, but there’s always more. Do your research and talk with our fantastic service technicians about what you should have done before the colder months are on top of us. Be smart and stay safe this holiday season!

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10-21-22

Tackle Winter Right With This Fall Car Care Month Checklist

Fall is finally here! The weather’s getting cooler, leaves are changing color, all signs that winter is not far behind. And while we may not be able to get you mentally ready for the change of the seasons, we can certainly help you prepare your car for fall and winter! Welcome to Fall Car Care Month at Rock Hill Nissan!

 

The Quintessential Fall Car Care Month Checklist

 

Fall is the perfect time to start checking up on your car. The weather isn’t entirely too cold yet, the Holidays are still a ways off, and you aren’t facing any severe weather conditions. The autumn season is prime for getting out in the garage or bringing your car to our service centers to get everything checked out before the real test of your car’s performance comes. 

 

Now you may be asking yourself, why is it important to check up on your car before winter? Well, dealing with car problems when it’s cold out is just not a great time. And we want you to always have a good time driving your Nissan. And while these tips may seem like common sense, you’d be surprised just how often these can fly under the radar and end up causing much more serious problems down the line. 

Fall Car Care Checklist

15 Tips to Prepare Your Car For Winter

 

  • Checking and Refilling Fluids: All of your fluids play a crucial role in keeping your Nissan performing at its absolute best, and during the cooler months you don’t need anything less. Taking a look at your oil, power steering fluid, brake fluid, and transmission fluid and refilling or changing any needed is a great way to prepare your car for the winter months ahead. Also, checking your antifreeze/coolant is an absolute must, as that will keep your engine from getting too cold should the temps drop.  
  • Change the Oil and Filters: While we’re on the topic of fluids, your oil is a big one that you should be up to date on. Ignoring an oil change, especially in winter is not a great idea. Old oil in your system greatly increases the risk of your engine overheating, severely damaging the engine. Check when your Nissan is due for its next oil change and make sure you get the filters changed as well. That way your brand-new oil stays new for as long as possible! 
  • Test the Heating/HVAC: Yes, your AC system may seem like an afterthought when it comes to having to prepare your car for winter and Fall car care. However, your HVAC is also responsible for filtering the air, dehumidifying your windshield, and heating your car. So making sure everything there is in working order before the weather gets too cold is probably a good idea. 
  • Tighten Your Hoses: Making sure your antifreeze and fluids are all topped off is great, but it won’t do you any good if it can’t reach your engine. If your hoses have any leaks or breaks, there’s a good chance you’ll overheat your engine when the cold weather hits and your engine has to work overtime to keep it warm. Be sure to give your hoses a good look over and tighten any that seem loose. 
  • Look at Your Belts: This actually goes hand in hand with your hoses. Hot summer months can severely degrade the belts in your engine. When checking under the hood, you should look for any signs of excessive wear, fraying, cracks, or looseness. If you do notice any of these, bring your Nissan over to Rock Hill Nissan and we’ll set you up with a new belt. 
  • Test Your Exhaust: Checking your exhaust system as part of your fall car care checklist could actually save your life. If there’s a leak in your exhaust, carbon monoxide could seep into your car. Not only that, but a damaged exhaust system can also result in lower mileage. Keep on the lookout for weird noises, smells, a vibrating gas pedal, or a rumble when your car is sitting still. All are signs that your exhaust system is damaged. Our Nissan -certified technicians will look for rust, holes, leaks, and other damage that may be present during our inspection. 
  • Check Your Brakes: You want to be able to stop when you need to stop right? Especially if the weather is giving you trouble, you don’t want your brakes to be something else to worry about. Bring your Nissan over to Rock Hill Nissan and our service team will make sure your brake system is in good working order. Replacing your brake pads and rotors is an essential part of your Fall car care and winter prep. 
  • Inspect All 4 Tires: The quality of your tires is just as important as that of your brakes. If your tires are worn down, they’re not going to do you much good in snow or rain. Make sure to not only check the tread but also their pressure. Tires lose pressure when the temperature drops and changing a flat in 30-degree weather isn’t fun. If you really want to future-proof yourself, getting a good set of snow tires or all-season tires will be greatly beneficial. 
  • Pay Attention to Steering and Suspension: You want to be in complete control of your Nissan in the event of bad weather. Making sure your power steering and suspension are up to par is the best way to remain in control at all times. If you’re worried, our team can take a look at your shock absorbers, struts, and chassis to see if anything needs adjusting or replacing.
  • Test The Battery: Bering able to rely on your battery during the winter months can be a huge weight off your shoulders. So be sure to check the charge and quality of your current battery. If it’s been more than three years, it may be time to replace the battery completely. Visit our service center and we’ll be able to set you up with a brand-new battery just in time for Winter. 
  • Replace Your Wipers: Did you know that the quality of your windshield wipers actually factors into your yearly inspection? That’s because if your wipers are leaving heavy streaks on your windshield, you will not have very good visibility. And visibility is essential in any type of winter weather.
  • Wash Your Car: This may definitely seem unnecessary, but hear us out for a second. Cleaning your car of all the summer mildew and dirt can help prepare it for what’s coming. Waxing your car can also protect it from snow, ice, and salt. Furthermore, it’s a good idea to regularly clean your car after it snows. Icemelt and salt can accumulate and erode certain components of your undercarriage if left on for extended periods of time. While not as immediately important as other tips on your Fall car care list, it won’t hurt. 
  • Clean Your Headlights: Between dead bulbs and cloudy headlight covers, there’s enough to check to warrant this being on your Fall car care list. Your headlights do two things out on the road. They help you see what’s in front of you, and they help other drivers see you. Check your bulbs and clean your headlight covers and ensure both of these functions are unimpeded. 
  • Pack Roadside Kit: If the unfortunate happens and you have car issues or slide on ice or snow, having a pack of supplies to fall back on is a great idea. Some things that should be in your roadside kit include an ice scraper, jumper cables, a flashlight, blankets, bottled water, non-perishable food, and a first aid kit. You can never be too careful. 
  • Get AAA/Roadside Assistance: No Fall car care list would be complete without roadside assistance. These guys can be literal life savers and save you from having to sit out in the cold waiting on a tow company and praying that they’re open. Companies like AAA offer 24/7 support and assistance so they’re always there when you need them. 

 

Stay On Top of Your Fall Car Care

 

It may seem like a lot to keep track of, but if you follow this Fall car care checklist, you’ll be more than prepared for when the colder months roll around. And if there’s anything you need to replace or you can’t check out yourself, you can always make Rock Hill Nissan a part of your winter car prep by scheduling an appointment with our service center in Rock Hill. Make sure you prepare your car for winter right with Rock Hill Nissan!

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