Prepare your vehicle for the upcoming freeze

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — AAA Tidewater is reminding Hampton Roads residents to prepare their vehicles for the upcoming deep freeze. 

With mornings starting off around 20 degrees Fahrenheit, your vehicle may need some extra attention to avoid any damage.

AAA is offering the tips below to help you prepare for the harsh temperatures and potential inclement weather:

  • Clean any corrosion from battery posts and cable connections and wash all surfaces with battery terminal cleaner or a solution of baking soda and water. Have the battery checked by a professional to ensure it is strong enough to face cold weather.
  •  Have any engine problems corrected at a good repair shop. Symptoms like hard starts, rough idling, stalling or diminished power could signal a problem that would be exacerbated by cold weather.
  • Replace worn windshield-wiper blades. You may want to purchase one-piece beam-type or rubber-clad “winter” blades to fight ice build-up. Use cold-weather windshield washer solvent and carry an ice-scraper.
  • Inspect all lights and replace burned out bulbs. Clean road grime or clouding from all lenses. Remember being visible to oncoming traffic – even in the daytime – is critical to safety.
  • Have a qualified auto technician check the exhaust system for leaks and look for any holes in the trunk and floorboards.
  • Examine tires for tread depth, uneven wearing and cupping. Remember, you need 1/32 of an inch (that is to the top of Washington’s head on a quarter) Check tire pressures once a month when tires are cold, before driving for any distance.
  • Check all fluids to ensure they are at or above the minimum safe levels.
  • Get your emergency kit equipped for winter weather. The kit should include: a bag of abrasive material or traction mats, snow shovel, flashlight with extra batteries, window washer solvent, ice scraper with brush, cloth or roll of paper towels, jumper cables, extra warm clothing, blankets, warning devices, drinking water, non-perishable snacks for both human and pet passengers, first-aid kit, basic toolkit, and a mobile phone and car charger.

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