You simply cannot be over-prepared when it comes to Chicago winters. Life will be much easier - as well as safer, if you follow these important tips. It doesn't take long to get it all together and feel comfortable and confident driving around in our winter weather.
Winter's Arrived!Make Sure You and Your Car are PreparedBlustery, wintry winds have moved into the Chicagoland area over the last 24 hours ...We knew we have been lucky with the unseasonably mild temperatures we've been experiencing. And that it's only inevitable that cold weather and snow would arrive in our area at some point. But it's still a shock to our systems ...
If you live in an area of the country that experiences cold weather too, you know that snow, ice, winds, and extremely-low temperatures can carry risks when you drive. Have you taken the needed precautions and prepped your car for winter driving conditions this year?
First, it's important to prep the vehicle ...
Take the following winter maintenance measures to ensure reliable vehicle performance and safety while on the road:
- Check the engine coolant/antifreeze levels
- Switch to a winter-grade oil
- Have your battery tested (Keep jumper cables available)
- Check tire pressure, as well as tread depth
- Place winter/cold temperature windshield wiper fluid in your car
- Make sure your wiper blades are in working order
- Inspect your car's brake lights and headlights
- Inspect your car's heater and window defroster
- Place a can of De-icer inside your car, garage/home and possibly at work
- Keep your car's gas tank, at minimum, half-full
- Do Not use your cruise control while driving in wintry conditions
- Increase the distance between you and the cars ahead
- Never run/warm your car in an enclosed area
- Keep your vehicle maintenanced throughout the winter months
- Think about applying a fresh coat of wax to your car's exterior. It protects against salt damage
Also, prepare and keep an emergency kit in your vehicle ...
Your emergency kit should include:
- A stocked first-aid kit (Bandaids, antiseptic alcohol pads, splint, gauze, etc.)
- Keep a mobile phone & charger available and serviceable
- Flashlights with extra batteries
- Blanket(s) or sleeping bag(s)
- Mittens, gloves, socks, and warm caps
- A small sack of sand or kitty litter for generating traction under stuck tires. It serves to add weight to your vehicle also
- A small shovel
- Tire Gauge
- Foam Tire Sealant
- Bottled water (Remember to allow room for freezing within your container)
- Booster cables
- Duct Tape
- Ice Scraper(s)
- Signaling devices such as flares or flashing lights/mirrors (matches & candles)
- Fire Extinguisher
- Non-perishable munchies
- Books, etc. (To amuse kids, should they be traveling with you)
- Insurance Information for Vehicle
- Insurance Information for driver/passengers, especially if there are specific health concerns/medications involved
Store and secure the emergency kit inside your vehicle. Then it's quickly and easily available if and when you need it. (If kept in the trunk, you may not be able to access it after an accident.)
It's best to be fully prepared for all possibilities while driving in winter weather in Chicagoland and elsewhere. Fully maintenance your vehicle. Gather these needed items and stay safe ...
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Mortgage Originator - NMLS #216987
IL Lic. #031.0006220 - WI License #216987
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