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Get Your Car Ready For The Cold

Provided by howstuffworks
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Preparing your car for winter weather is more than just checking to see if the heater is working perfectly. Take a few precautions before you brave the cold and snow and you’ll feel a whole lot safer as you make your way through the winter wonderland outside.

Get A Pre-Season Inspection

Take your Toyota to a dealer for a pre-season inspection. The mechanic should check all systems, including the battery, antifreeze level, thermostat, heater, brakes and defroster.

Check Your Tires

Check for proper inflation and make sure your tires have adequate tread. If the treads are worn, replace your tires. And if it snows in your area, think about switching out your tires for a set of snow tires. Snow treads have better traction on ice and snow and are better equipped to handle extreme winter conditions.

Test Your Lights

Perform a visual inspection of your Toyota’s lights. Make sure the front and rear lights are operational, especially the flashing hazard lights. You may need someone to watch you pump your brakes to check your brake lights, but it’s worth the time.

Winterize Your Windshield

Standard windshield wiper fluid can freeze in extreme cold. Use one designed for colder climates. Also, get winter wiper blades to cut through snow and ice. Check the spray nozzles of your windshield washer system and use a needle or pin to clear blockages.

Rinse Off Road Salt

Salt used to de-ice roads during winter can damage your Toyota's paint. Rinsing it off every once in a while can help, but a good wash and coat of fresh wax will help prevent corrosion and keep your Toyota looking great all winter long.

Of course, try to avoid extreme conditions or wait them out whenever possible. But if you’ve followed all the tips above, your Toyota should be ready to handle just about whatever Mother Nature throws its way this winter. If you want to be sure you’re all set for the snow, schedule service with your local Toyota Dealer for a quick checkup.