Mid-Winter Check-Up: How's Your Vehicle Handling?

By: Castlegar Toyota   |   21 Jan 2019
a dark blue Toyota drives down a winter road near Castlegar, BC

As sub-zero temperatures bite at your fingers and remote car starters become your most-prized vehicle feature, you may find yourself wondering about what effects a true Canadian winter has on your Toyota. We know how our bodies respond to frigid weather -- our skin hurts, our joints move slower, and serious damage can occur if we’re exposed to the elements for too long.

Thankfully, your vehicle was built to handle the snow, ice and wind of winter -- but there are still key maintenance tasks you need to have done to ensure that your ride cruises swiftly until springtime. Below, we’re going to go over all of the must-have items you need to add to your car’s checkup list.

Fluids

There are few things more annoying than running out of windshield washer fluid while stuck behind a tractor-trailer on a slushy day -- except for maybe having your car break down on a country road mid-winter because of an engine oil leak! Both of these chilly scenarios can be avoided by making sure that your vehicle’s fluids are topped off when the mercury is at its lowest. 

You’ll have lots of different levels to check, including brake fluid, power steering fluid, windshield washer fluid, transmission fluid, and engine oil. Antifreeze is also a biggie, to ensure that things stay liquid even on the coldest of days. If that list sounds a bit overwhelming to you, don’t sweat it! Your mechanic would be happy to inspect all of these compartments -- and they’ll do it inside a heated garage.

Tires

Does your Toyota have tire pressure sensors? If it does, you’ll know the second your pressure plummets with the temperature, as warnings will flash all over your dashboard. If it doesn’t offer this feature, you might be in the dark when it comes to how full your tires are.

Combat the mystery by checking on the pressure -- either at your own home or while your car is in the shop for its mid-season tune-up. Keep in mind that many gas station air pumps stop working when winter hits, so you may want to swing by your mechanic’s even if you’re not planning on doing a full check-in.

Overall Mechanical Soundness

Maybe it’s the earmuffs or maybe its the sound of heater fans blasting at full, but either way, come winter, hearing abnormal vehicle sounds becomes tricky. While certain issues are obvious in warmer months, you could completely miss an issue until it’s grown into a major problem during the frosty season.

Other aspects like tire tread and battery strength can make all the difference when starting your car on the extra-cold mornings or driving home on a snowy night. If you do not have the time, know-how, or desire to conduct these checks, once again, your mechanic would gladly look over all safety points of your Toyota to make sure the end of winter has no nasty surprises in store for you! 

The Takeaway

Sure -- you can head out on a -20°C evening to complete all of these checks on your own, but if that doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, Castlegar Toyota has you covered! We can thoroughly inspect your vehicle no matter the weather and address any safety concerns that arise. After your check-up, you’ll be able to drive through the last half of the season with peace of mind and an engine that purrs.

To book your tune-up, contact us today and rest assured that this winter’s got nothing on your Toyota! For more tips on how to stay winter-ready, check out the video below:

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