Low temperatures increase the chances of the car suffering serious mechanical damage, preventing us from driving safely. In this sense, prevention is an essential factor to prevent many components of our vehicle from being damaged as a result of the cold. For example, one of the mechanical elements of the vehicle that suffers the most from low temperatures is the battery, since it is increases the chance of downloading.
Normally, according to Confortauto Hankook Masters, the battery does not need maintenance, beyond changing it at the end of its useful life, which is usually between 3 and five 5. If the battery is of this average age, it is advisable to change it before finding a morning that the car does not start or does so with great difficulty. At the slightest symptom, it is better to replace it.
Tires must be in good condition throughout the year. If these do not have the correct pressure or the rubber pattern is worn, our connection to the asphalt will be insecure. In winter temperatures drop, it snows and rains more frequently, so it is common to find wet or even frozen or snowy asphalt when we drive. Tire inspection is essential at this time to avoid effects such as aquaplaning. We must take into account the pressure recommended by the manufacturer and check it periodically to detect if any tire has lost air.
It is also advisable to check wear and depth regularly. To guarantee maximum grip and traction, the tire tread depth must not exceed 1.6 millimeters (established legal limit), and it is advisable to change it when the depth is less than 3 millimeters. Another important aspect that we recommend at this time is the installation of winter tires. These tires replace chains when they are mandatory and are the perfect option for driving safely in cold, rainy, ice or snow conditions.
It is also essential that the windshield wipers are in good working order. There is nothing more uncomfortable than driving on a rainy day with a bad wiper blade that leaves a blurry halo on the windshield. Make sure they are clean and replace them when they are worn. Although they look good visually, they can have dry rubber, since sudden changes in temperature, long exposure to the sun and the passage of time work against them. Pour water on the windshield and check that they sweep well, if not, change them. Another important detail is to check if there is enough windshield washer fluid in our tank and if not, refill it. This will help us defrost the windshield wiper in the morning and prevent breakage of the hoses, pump and fluid container.
In the cold we must also check our braking system because with low temperatures they lose effectiveness. The poor condition of these components results in longer braking periods and an increased chance of suffering an accident. It is important to pay attention to the brake pads, as accumulated dirt and moisture can cause squeaking and friction with the brake discs. This can reduce the braking capacity or excessively increase the braking temperature, leading to the pads crystallizing and causing them to lose their properties.
Furthermore, and far from being an element of pure comfort, the air conditioning system is key to reducing condensation in the cabin and defogging the windows, so its correct operation in this season is of great importance. It is important to check that it works in perfect conditions so that, in addition to helping us combat the cold, it offers us maximum visibility. It must be taken into account that the heating radiator is extremely easy to clog due to solid waste floating in the coolant circuit. In this case, the best advice is to go to a trusted workshop to carry out a correct and meticulous cleaning of the heating radiator and the entire cooling circuit of the car.