New Jersey winters can be brutal. Especially if your car is not prepared for icy weather.
This past weekend I drove for 35 minutes in a snowstorm and saw at least a dozen accidents.
Luckily I was able to take my time and go slowly without getting in one myself.
After my experience I felt that NJ Car Coupon needed to share some new tips on how to prep your own car for a harsh NJ winter.
1. Test Your Battery and Charging System
Cold weather is always an issue for older batteries.
For those subzero mornings when the ice just won’t come off your windows, your battery and starter have to work that much harder.
Most batteries have a lifespan of around 4 years.
2. Antifreeze and Cooling Systems Prevent Winter Breakdowns
Antifreeze needs to be replaced every two years in order to prevent cold weather induced breakdowns.
Without adequate coolant your engine will overheat and lead to thousands of dollars in repairs.
So get your coolant flushed every two years!
On average an antifreeze fuel flush costs an average of $70-$120.
3. Defrosters and Wipers Are Key to Visibility
It may seem obvious but your wipers and defrosters are central to safe winter driving.
If you can’t see out of your windshield due to steam, frost or old flailing wipers, you’re that much more likely to get into an icy crash.
Replace your wipers for just $20 each on most vehicles, and have a mechanic test your defrosters.
4. Better Traction with Tire Tread and Pressure
Tire pressure and tire tread are another important part of safe winter driving. Check your tire tread by placing a penny in between the tread.
If the tread doesn’t cover most of Lincoln’s head, your’re tires are getting old and you may want to consider buying a new set.
Or ask an attendant to help at your local gas station.
A set of snow tires are your best bet. Running around $500 for a set of four.
5. Stock Emergency Supplies in Your Trunk
Carry some extra food, blankets, phone batteries and water in your trunk.
You can definitely personalize what you’d include in your emergency pack. I suggest storing a crank radio and flashlight, as well as additional batteries, trail mix, and even some wood in case you get stranded overnight.
Definitely include some $1 hand-warmers, they’ll help save you from frost bite in a serious winter storm.
6. Use Sand or Kitty Litter to Get Out of Ice
One little known technique for getting a car stuck out of ice involves sand, and even kitty litter.
Similar to gravel and rock salt, kitty litter and sand will provide some traction that will help your tires escape an ice patch.
Simply throw it around your stuck tires to help improve your chances of getting out.
Kitty litter runs about $5-$10 per bag, while a bag of sand is $5 from Home Depot.
7. Road Flairs and Flashlights to Alert Others
Visibility is a huge issue in white out snowstorms on long stretches of highway.
If you do end up getting in an accident where your vehicle is disabled, be sure to have a few road flairs and flashlights in the trunk.
Road flairs and flashlights can be the difference between a normal accident and a tragedy.