With the onset of winter, you should take precautions to protect your car and avoid unpleasant surprises.
Just like your home, your car can be affected by the cold. gives you some tips to ensure that your car survives the winter at its best.
Protecting your car in winter: windscreens and windows
Weather conditions, especially ice and snow, can limit your visibility on the road and damage your windscreen in the long term. Here are a few tips from to prepare for winter:
– Make sure your washer fluid is full, and consider replacing it with antifreeze that can withstand temperatures down to -25°. Washer fluid can damage the car’s spray system.
– Check the condition of the windscreen wipers, which often dry out in the summer heat and are therefore ineffective.
– Keep a window wiper (and gloves) handy. For the lazy, you can place cardboard boxes over the windscreen at night to protect it from overnight frosts.
To avoid temperature jumps that could cause the windscreen to crack, it is advisable not to pour hot water on the windscreen when it is still cold. Instead, gradually defrost the windscreen by switching the heating system to cold mode for a few minutes before driving off.
Protecting your car in winter: tyres
The general condition of your car’s tyres should be checked all year round, but in winter they need extra attention. Braking distances are longer on wet, icy or snowy roads, and slick or underinflated tyres do not provide the grip needed for fast, efficient braking.
Winter tyres are not compulsory but are highly recommended in the event of snow, ice or frequent frost. Don’t hesitate to plan to fit them – it’s not always easy! You can also opt for wheel chains or even socks in case of heavy snow on the roads. They are sometimes mandatory on some B26 designated mountain roads.
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Protecting your car in winter – bodywork
Door seals are made of rubber that cannot withstand low temperatures. They can “stick” to the door metal in winter. It is therefore advisable to lubricate them before the winter to avoid pressuring the door too hard, which would weaken the seals. Lubrication can also be useful to limit the freezing of locks. An anti-freeze spray can also help.
Protecting the car in winter: engine and battery
The engine is also put to the test in winter. Depending on the weather and the condition of the battery, it can lose more than 30% of its power! For this reason, a battery charge check using a multimeter is highly recommended before the winter. This can be done at home or with the help of a specialist.
We recommend the use of oil designed for low temperatures, especially if your car is old. Consult your owner’s manual or a qualified technician to help you choose the right engine oil for your car and season. You should also check the coolant level to ensure that the water in the engine is not frozen.
As soon as the windscreen is thawed or the heater or headlights come on, the car battery is stressed and weakened by the weather. That’s why it’s important to check the battery’s condition before winter with a multimeter. If it falls below 12 volts, it should be recharged or replaced to prevent damage. In any case, be sure to take the cables with you before a long journey.
Nothing like careful driving
Even with a well-prepared vehicle, it is important to drive carefully in winter. Make sure you check the weather and road conditions before every journey. Be sure to protect your car with a tarpaulin or cover when you are not driving. In addition, drive carefully, observing the speed limit and safe distance. If, despite all precautions, your car breaks down, your car insurance cover may be activated.
Did you know about it? Your insurer can refuse to pay the claim if they think you have been negligent in the routine maintenance of your car.