How to Avoid a Vehicle Breakdown This Winter

When you live in Edmonton, a city that is -20°C for several months of the year, you always want to be prepared when you’re on the road. When you’re driving down the Henday, the last thing you want is to end up on the side of the road and need to call a tow truck, but for those moments that you do need one, River City Towing is here to help!

Nevertheless, we want to help you prevent a vehicle breakdown so you can get where you need to go all winter long:

  1. Install winter tires – It is important to install winter tires so that you can make it through our tough Edmonton winters. Snow and ice will build up on the roads all winter long and winter tires will help you to stop faster, accelerate easier, and corner better. Winter tires are designed with a special rubber compound that will stay pliable in cold weather conditions, which gives you better traction on snow and ice. In comparison, all-season tires will stiffen up in cold temperatures and cause you to lose traction. Installing winter tires will keep your vehicle on the road and out of the ditch.
  2. Check your tire pressure – It’s important to check your tire pressure because fluctuations in temperature will cause your tire pressure to fluctuate. Your tire pressure can fluctuate by 1 – 2 PSI for every 10°C change in air temperature. Check your tire pressure bi-weekly to make sure that it’s set to the correct PSI for your vehicle; this will help ensure that you don’t end up with a flat tire or a TPMS notification. Having the correct PSI for your tires will help prevent a flat tire or tire blow out.
  3. Fill up with winter washer fluid – Ensuring that there is winter washer fluid in your windshield washer reservoir will make sure that your windshield stays clear all winter long. If you accidentally leave summer washer fluid in the reservoir, it could freeze and cause damage to your washer fluid system. Summer washer fluid could also freeze onto your windshield and cause you to lose visibility.
  4. Use synthetic oil – It is best to use synthetic oil in your vehicle in the winter months. Conventional oil gets thick when it gets cool and won’t flow through your engine properly; this causes your engine parts to wear out because they aren’t receiving enough lubrication. Synthetic oil has a lower freezing point so it will stay thinner in cooler temperatures and keep your engine well-lubricated. Using synthetic oil in the winter will help ensure that you don’t end up with engine failure while you’re on the road.
  5. Check your vehicle’s battery – Vehicle batteries last only about 3 – 5 years, and as they age, they will start to lose their charge. Batteries also lose charge in the cold winter months. When the temperature reaches below 0°C, batteries lose 35% of their charge and at -17°C batteries lose 60% of their charge. If your battery is reaching the end of its life and it’s below 0°C, that could mean that it won’t have enough charge to start your car and could leave you stranded. Have your battery’s voltage checked to make sure that it doesn’t need to be replaced.

Even if you follow these steps, we know that the unexpected can happen, so when you need a tow truck, give us a call. Our tow truck services are available 24/7 anywhere in Edmonton and the surrounding area.