Magazine article Ebony

Tuning Up for Winter Weather

Magazine article Ebony

Tuning Up for Winter Weather

Article excerpt

ICE, snow and freezing temperatures can turn even the simplest car problems into potentially life-threatening hazards. But most major problems can be avoided if motorists follow some simple steps to properly maintain their automobiles before hitting the road.

The first and perhaps the most important step is to plan ahead and check your automobile for reliable operation before the winter season starts. "Peace of mind comes from having the confidence that you can handle the situations that arise," says George Giek, an AAA Automobile Engineering and Road Services official. "That means getting your car ready for winter."

By adhering to the following tips, motorists can minimize driving risks and look forward to safe and enjoyable times behind the wheel.

* Check your antifreeze. Maintaining a 50/50 antifreeze and water ratio is crucial. A mixture of more than two-thirds antifreeze will reduce the solution's effectiveness in cold weather.

* Check your tire pressure and wheel alignment every two weeks to ensure safe road-handling. Never reduce tire pressure to increase traction on snow and ice because it only leads to excessive tire wear.

* Test your battery for power because a battery's efficiency is drastically reduced in cold temperatures. Check, and if necessary, restore water, and clean corrosion from connections.

* Check the condition of your spark plugs and the car's ignition system. If necessary, replace old spark plugs with new ones and clean spark plug wires to restore peak starts. …

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