How to Best Care for Your Car This Winter

Congratulations! You survived the first – though probably not the last – snow storm of 2017. 

Now would be a good time to perform some winter maintenance on your vehicle. The frigid temperatures that winter brings with it have a major effect on road conditions and our automobiles. With icy roads, snowstorms and torrential rain looming, taking care of your vehicle throughout the winter will help protect it - and you, and your passengers - during the harshest conditions. If you live near one of our shops in Virginia Beach, feel free to come in and let us handle the work.  Otherwise, check out these tips for how to best care for your car during the winter.

ice frozen on windshield

Check Your Air Pressure

Remember Deflategate? Well, there is some truth to those claims that weather was to blame for the deflated football, not Tom Brady.

Air pressure does change with the weather: as the air cools, air pressure decreases. And no matter who you’re rooting for during this weekend’s Super Bowl 51, let the Patriots quarterback be a reminder for you to check the air pressure in your tires. Checking and setting tire pressure to your manufacturer’s recommended PSI can not only prolong the life of your tires, it can also improve your miles per gallon (MPG). 

Note: Unless your tire is noticeably flat, you shouldn’t judge tire inflation just by looking at it. In order to get the correct PSI reading, you will need to use a tire pressure gauge.

Keep An Eye On Your Wipers

Seriously, check your wiper blades. Wipers take a beating in the winter. They battle salt and spray from the road, heavy snow and severe ice; worst of all, they can freeze and become stuck to your windshield. 

Think about that scene in A Christmas Story when Flick got his tongue stuck to a frozen pole and the Firemen had to rip it off –

flick with tongue stuck to frozen pole


That’s the sort of pain your car will feel after turning on wipers that are frozen to the windshield. We triple dog dare you to check your wiper blades on a regular basis, especially throughout the winter season.

Test Your Cooling System

The risk of your coolant freezing increases significantly if the coolant is old or diluted. You can check this by doing a simple test of the coolant using a hydrometer. The tester sucks up a small amount of coolant and then measures the freezing point. Don’t have a hydrometer on hand? You can purchase the tool at any auto store, or stop by the nearest Davis Car Care and we will check it for free.

vehicle coolant test

Winterize Your Washer Fluid

Again, here, the risk is freezing. Your windshield washer fluid is supposed to increase visibility. If your washer fluid freezes, it cannot do its job. Frozen washer fluid is also likely to crack the fluid holding tank, so the next time you add more washer fluid, you may just find a puddle of it under your car or truck.  

To avoid this, make sure you are using washer fluid that is rated for low temperatures. If you’re switching out summer washer fluid, drain the reservoir before putting in the winter washer fluid.

Keep It Clean

One piece of maintenance that protects your car, keeps it lookin’ stylish, and lets you avoid the dreaded carpool of shame. Yes, your passengers are judging you.

Routine Vehicle Maintenance at Davis Car Care

From oil changes to state inspections, Davis Car Care is your one-stop shop for routine vehicle maintenance. Our facilities contain the latest automotive diagnostic and repair equipment, and our computer system provides our staff with technical data and service requirements for all vehicles. You can set up an appointment or stop in at one of our Virginia Beach locations, every Monday through Saturday.


We strive to give our Virginia Beach customers the best experience possible. That's why with every visit to Davis we check your air pressure, reset your maintenance light, top off your washer fluid, vacuum the front of the vehicle, and place a bag of candy in your car to sweeten the ride home.