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When the forecast calls for snow, many thoughts race through our heads. Am I prepared? Will my car start up before work? Can my tires handle the wet driving conditions ahead? Will my brakes stop me in time, so I don’t have a fender bender in the snow? We depend on our cars to get us through the day and we can’t let snowfall get in the way of our to-do lists. You may have made the necessary preparations at home, but have you shown your car the same love? Scheduling a quick winter inspection at your reliable auto repair facility will help keep you and your family safe on the road this season.

The hazardous driving conditions that winter weather brings are extremely inconvenient, but completely unavoidable. Unless you plan to hibernate for the next few months, you will have to brave the elements. Having a good relationship with your mechanic and listening to the following tips will help you maintain your safety this winter.

Your tires should be your first area of concern. Your tires are the only part of your car that are in constant contact with the road way. Having proper inflation and tread is vital, but how do you know if your tires are okay? Don’t risk pushing your tires’ lifespan for one more season. Rubber doesn’t last forever, so if you’re unsure about the condition of your tires or if you don’t know which snow tires are right for your vehicle, simply call up your trusted auto repair center with ASE certified technicians. These highly skilled professionals will be able to thoroughly inspect your vehicle and provide you with the right recommendations for your particular vehicle.

Be sure to have your mechanic thoroughly inspect your vehicle’s windshield wipers, brakes, exhaust, heater, and defrost systems, as these will all have to work much harder in the winter weather conditions. Your driving visibility is dependent upon effectively working windshield wipers and proper defrost performance.

Don’t forget to pack a winter emergency kit in your trunk. The following supplies should be included in your emergency kit: Snow shovel, ice scraper with snowbrush on one end, flashlight and extra batteries, abrasive material to help with traction (sand, cat litter, salt or traction mats), jumper cables, candles, matches or lighter and high-energy food (chocolate or dried fruit is always good), warning device (flares or reflective triangles), winter clothes, boots, sleeping bags and blankets, and first-aid supplies.