How Does Cold Weather Affect Your Car in the South?

cold weather

Winter has arrived, and it’s been hitting Pensacola especially hard this year. The freezing and near-freezing temps are tough on people and cars alike – especially because we experience them so infrequently. Fortunately, avoiding car troubles is as easy as understanding the impact of cold weather, and knowing how to work around it. 

Here are our top tips:

How Cold Weather Impacts Your Car

Cars are designed to be sturdy. Still, cold can create a host of problems. When the temperatures dip to the freezing mark, here are a few things your car could experience:

  • Deflated tires. As the air in your tires gets cold, it contracts. This means less pressure on the walls of your tires, and less inflation as a result. With this in mind, be sure to check your tire pressure before you go anywhere in the winter. If you’re driving on “summer” tires, you may want to transition to all-season tires, as well. 
  • Dead batteries. Cold weather is especially hard on batteries. Frigid weather drains the battery charge and can leave your car without the “juice” it needs to turn over. Fortunately, you can revive a dead battery with a portable battery charge or a jump from another vehicle. If your battery dies regularly, head to your local auto shop to have a replacement battery installed. 
  • Thick oil. Chilly weather makes your car’s fluids thick and sluggish. In fact, cold temperatures can even impact the fuel efficiency of your car! To remedy this, be sure to warm your car up for 5-10 minutes before you go anywhere. This allows the fluids to loosen up and distribute naturally throughout your car’s engine. You can also visit your local auto shop to switch to low-viscosity oil, which won’t get as thick in the winter. 
  • Frozen windshields or doors. If the cold combines with moisture, it can freeze your windows and doors in place. The result is that your car becomes an ice chest on wheels. To prevent this, let your car run for a while before you drive it. The heat generated will thaw out windows and doors, ensuring visibility and a cozy ride. 

Preventative Maintenance can Help Your Car Cope with the Cold

While warming your car up before you drive, checking your tire pressure, and buying a new battery can all help you avoid cold weather car problems, preventative maintenance is key. Here at DeBroux Automotive, our team can give your car the attention it needs to cope with freezing temps. 

We provide a variety of winterization services to help cars and trucks get through the chilly weather unscathed – regardless of whether you drive hundreds of miles every month or just to work and back. 
Whether you need a new battery, a new set of tires, or just someone to check, change, or top off your important fluids, we’re here for you. Contact us today to make an appointment or stop by the shop for more information about our offerings or our team.