How to care for your car in cold weather -

Is your car ready for snow and ice?

Brutal winter conditions can really give our cars a beating. But our auto pro, Steve Strope, has some great tips on how you can make sure that your car survives Mother Nature's wrath.

Steve says that to winterize your car, you should start with the wipers.

"Take a look at your windshield wiper blades. You can see the little hinges and arms that move in the blade assembly -- they need to stay curved to the windshield so that they can wipe your glass clean," he says. "The problem is that in the winter ice and snow can freeze these solid and then they're not doing their job."

Compare your old blade with a new all-weather blade. Notice it has no linkage to get frozen, just a nice flexible piece that will stay good no matter what the conditions. And a nice spoiler built into it, to help hold it down onto the glass when you're driving at speed.

In cold weather states a lot of people have snow tires, but in the warmer states usually you have a set of chains. These are important to have because if you head up to the mountains, they are required by law in some areas.

"Installing chains can be a little bit difficult, so when you purchase them, try fitting them on in your driveway in nice weather, so you know how to do it when you're stuck out in the snow," Steve says.

"This would be a good time to check your anti-freeze level too," he continues. "Make sure the engine's cold; you don't want to get burned by hot fluid under pressure. Pull your cap off and check your levels. Go to your manual to make sure where the level is supposed to be, and if you need some, top it off. If not, put your cap back on, and you're ready to roll!"

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