Tips For Starting Your Car On A Cold Iowa Day
Yep, this week's weather stunk! It was very snowy, which is one thing, but it was also dangerously COLD.
With the cold comes the inevitable; we will experience car issues. From a slow start to a no start, I have some tips that can help you prevent the stress and headaches that come with cold-related car troubles. Follow these tips, and you shouldn't have any issues gettin' your whip rolling.
- Batteries hate the cold! Oil does too. Solution? Use a battery heater or engine block heater. You've likely seen someone plug in their car, right? That's what this is. When possible, keep your car out of the cold. If you don;t have a garage, YourMechanic.com
...parking under or near something big can actually help. Park under a carport or tree or next to a building. The reason has to do with the physics of heating and cooling, and a car parked for the night in an open carport or under a large tree may be several degrees warmer the next morning than one parked out in the open.
- Use the correct oil for the season. You might need to consult your vehicle's owner manual for this, or ask a mechanic. Typically 5W is suggested. But again, double-check to make sure. Synthetic oils can work well too, but always check with an expert before switching to synthetic.
- Before you start your car, shut off that radio! Wait, I just really said that? Hey, you can turn it back on once the car is started. Unplug your phone charger too. Turn off all electrical accessories in fact. It puts a LOT less pressure on an already cold and stressed battery.
- If your car continues to have issues starting, you may need a new battery. Jump it if necessary and replace the dead or dying battery ASAP.
- Keep your gas levels half full or more. Condensation can form in the empty part of your gas tank. When our temps get so low, that condensation can freeze and collect into icy blockages in your cars fuel line. This will create problems with starting your car. The best way to avoid this happening is to keep your tank as filled as possible. Hey, at least gas isn't too pricey right now.
Good luck out there! My only other advice, if all else fails, call in sick. 😉