LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - The cold weather is not only dangerous for you, but can be a serious problem for your vehicle.
AAA has issued a cold weather warning during these bitter cold days to help drivers prepare their cars for the freezing temps.
First, always check traffic and weather conditions before heading out.
Make sure your battery and charging system are fully charged and in good condition. Keeping your gas tank at least half full will avoid gas line freeze-up. Also, use windshield washer fluid with a winter solvent that won’t freeze. And, use engine coolant that provides anti-freeze protection down to the lowest temperatures you expect to encounter; -30oF/-34oC is a good guideline.
Try to always park your vehicle in a garage for maximum protection. If you don't have a garage, put a tarp over the hood or park protected from nasty winds. One way to keep doors from freezing shut is to place a plastic trash bag between the door or window glass and the frame.
And although it's tempting, postpone car washing until the temperature is above freezing.
AAA says the top three service calls they receive during this time of you are for battery problems, towing, and tire problems.
And if you do get stranded, they say to stay with your car as long as it is safe to do so. Also, if the engine can be started, run it only long enough to keep warm. And make sure that the exhaust pipe is snow-free.