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How to drive safe in cold winter months

Published: Feb. 13, 2021 at 8:28 PM CST
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HASTINGS, Neb. (KSNB) - If people are struggling to stay on the road or get their car to start in cold weather, then it might be time to take it to an auto repair shop.

Cold and snowy weather can really be damaging to people’s cars including the battery.

“If your battery is five-years-old or older than that then we recommend replacing it, the cold basically drains the battery,” said Tom Dinsdale Automotive of Hastings Service Manager Tara Richardson.

Mechanics over at Tom Dinsdale said battery trouble isn’t the only issue people experience during the cold winter months. On days when it’s below freezing, the fluids in people’s cars start to chill which can also cause cars to stall and stop. They suggest for people heat their cars for 10 to 15 minutes before they take off.

“Those fluids need to basically thin out a little bit to make sure they’re lubricating all of their components of your engine, your transmission, because that can basically effect how they wear,” Richardson said.

Richardson believes it’s best for people to get their cars serviced just before the winter hits to get their temperatures checked, and to make sure people have enough fluids inside their cars. If the coolant is low, more than likely, it will keep the heater from working properly.

“At that time those fluids are always checked, same thing as far as your tires,” Richardson said. “When we’re having the season change as far as fall into winter, let’s take a look at those treads to make sure you have enough tread, to make sure tires are inflated to the correct temperature because that’s going to affect your traction on snow and ice.”

Over at Quick Lane Tire and Auto Center in Hastings, managers said most times people don’t even realize their tires are bad until it’s too late.

“You can’t stop, you can’t take off, a lot of the times when you see somebody off of the side of the road, that’s when they realize, “hey I can’t do this the way I should,” Quick Lane Tire and Auto Center Manager Nick Kohmetscher.

Mechanics encourage people to keep emergency supplies and jumper cables at-all-times in-case of an emergency in this weather.

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