Car Care for the Cold

Grace Cruikshank, Backpage Editor

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The winter months are upon us and the roads are getting icy. Over half of the people in our school are licensed drivers, so it is important to be prepared in case of any sudden car problems, breakdowns, or accidents due to the slippery roads and freezing weather. Here are the essentials that will help keep you safe this winter:

  • Check the tire treads on your car. Make sure that your tires have at least 5/32” of tread depth. You can measure this with a penny! If part of Lincoln’s head is always covered by the tread, then you have enough tread.
  • Check your tire pressure. When the temperature drops, air contracts when it is cold. Your tire pressure should be checked and adjusted.
  • Keep your tank full! You do not to run out of gas in freezing temperatures. Also, in the winter, condensation in the fuel tank can freeze and create ice blockages in the fuel lines. This will create problems with starting your car.
  • Make sure your windows are clear. Give your car time to warm up before you drive so that the windows are not frosty or foggy. And make sure you have an ice scraper in your car! Minnetonka students are often clearing windows with folders and hockey sticks.This is not a good idea!
  • Keep your phone charged in case you need to call for help. Take it slow and give yourself plenty of room to stop.
  • Carry an emergency winter kit. The kit should include the following…
    • A Shovel: Getting your car stuck in a snow bank and not being able to get it out is not the ideal situation you want to be in. But if you have a shovel in your car you can dig yourself out in no time.
    • Flashlight: Light can help you see things but also get attention from cars passing by. Extra Clothing and Blankets: The below freezing temperatures can catch up to you fast if you’re outside for a decent amount of time. Extra hats, gloves and blankets might just save you from frostbite.
    • Jumper Cables: If you are stuck at school and you cannot get your car to start due to the freezing weather there are over 100 more cars in the parking lot that could give your car a good jump start.
    • First Aid Kit
    • Food and Water
    • Red Bandana: On the side of the road you might be a little hard to see. By tying a red bandana to your car you’re ensuring to stay safe in case an oncoming vehicle cannot see you.
    • Durable Bag: Place all these essentials so a nice durable bag that won’t rip is important to keep everything together in case of an emergency.

Most importantly, if you find yourself stuck or stranded, stay in your car, put on your flashers, call for help and wait until it arrives. If it is slippery, other cars could hit you if you are outside of your car!

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