As the saying goes, “If you don’t like the weather in Utah, just wait five minutes.” That may be true, but you still need to ensure your vehicle is ready for winter driving. Even if a storm is short-lived winter driving can be a challenge. Between the snow and the ice, it’s important to make sure your car is up for the task. That means doing some prep work such as changing the oil, putting on winter tires, and making sure your windshield wipers are in good condition. It also means having an emergency car kit on hand, just in case. Here’s what you need to know about winter driving in Utah.
How to Survive Winter Driving in Utah
Besides giving yourself extra time to scrape ice off your windows and navigate snowy roads, here’s what else Master Muffler Downtown Ogden suggests doing to survive driving in a Utah winter.
Change the Oil
One of the most important things you can do to prepare your car for winter driving is to change the oil. This will help your engine run more smoothly and efficiently when the weather gets cold. Be sure to use a high-quality oil that is designed for cold weather conditions, such as 5W-30 or 0-W30. You should also check your owner’s manual to see how often you should be changing your oil. In general, it’s a good idea to change it every 5,000 miles or so. Bring your vehicle into Master Muffler for an oil change if it’s been a while.
Put on Winter Tires
Another important step in preparing your car for winter driving is to put on winter tires. These tires are designed to grip the road better in cold and snowy conditions. They’ll give you better traction and help you avoid slipping and sliding on icy roads.
You can also invest in tire chains or studded tires. These will provide extra traction when you need it most. Remember, however, that chains and studs are only legal from October 15 through March 31 in Utah. If you drive with chains or studs when the roads don’t require them, you run the risk of ruining the tires for future use.
Properly inflated tires are also crucial for safer winter driving, so check the PSI and make adjustments as necessary to compensate for changes in pressure due to fluctuations in temperature.
Replace the Windshield Wipers
Another crucial component of winterizing your car is replacing your windshield wipers. This is especially important if you live in an area that gets a lot of snowfall or freezing rain throughout winter. New windshield wipers will help you see more clearly when visibility is low. Be sure to check your owner’s manual to see what type of windshield wipers are best for your car. You should also keep an eye out for cracks or splits in the rubber – these can cause streaks and smears that make it difficult to see clearly.
As tempting as it is, don’t rely on your wipers to remove ice from your windshield! Give yourself time to properly scrape that pesky layer of ice from your windows and get your defroster going inside the vehicle. You can also use a cover to shield your windows and side-view mirrors from forming ice in the first place.
Emergency Car Kit
Last but not least, it’s always a good idea to have an emergency car kit on hand when driving in winter weather conditions. This kit should include items like jumper cables, a flashlight, a first-aid kit, and blankets. You may also want to include non-perishable food items and water, just in case you get stranded somewhere along the way. Other emergency kit items to consider:
- Collapsible snow shovel
- Kitty litter or sand for traction
- Portable phone chargers
- Portable battery charger (to give a jumpstart if no other vehicles are around)
Winter driving doesn’t have to be a nightmare – as long as you’re prepared! By putting in the effort to have your vehicle winterized, you can help ensure that your car is up for whatever winter throws at it. And don’t forget – an emergency car kit is always a good idea! So stock up on supplies and hit the road with confidence this winter season.