Overlooking cold weather car care could leave you stranded

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - The arctic blast has kept mechanics at David Poulos Tire and Auto shop extra busy.

"Everything in your car that could break down in the cold weather will break down if it's about to break down," Mechanic David Poulos said.

That's why it's important to have your car serviced regularly. While at the mechanic shop, technicians advise that you get your antifreeze checked, especially during the winter.

"People really need to be concerned about that because all it takes is someone to have a problem with the water pump in the summer time and couldn't afford it and all the antifreeze leaked," Service Manager Kevin Poulos said. "The next thing you know, they have a cracked block and you are talking about thousands of dollars."

Many places, Poulos said, will check your antifreeze for free. It is recommended you get it changed once a year.

Also during the winter months, give yourself some extra time before rushing out the door, because, just like you, your car needs time to warm up.

"Oil is so glued in the bottom and it has to come up. So that's something people need to really think about when they are getting into their car in the mornings," Kevin Poulos said. "Just crank it up and let it warm up. Don't get in there and get ready for NASCAR."

If your battery is four years old, or you are having troubles starting your car, it's a good idea to bring it in and have a technician hook up a load test to your battery to find out if it is still good.

"Batteries are a problem because when the cold weather comes, a weak battery will fail," David Poulos said.

Also, Poulos advises you to check your tire pressure once every few weeks, because as the temperature drops, so does the pressure in your tires.

Kevin Poulos said, "There are all sorts of good shops around here that will be more than happy to help people out. They know we are not accustomed to this type of cold weather."

"Bring it in before it gets too bad," David Poulos said. "You don't want to break down in this condition of weather."

One last piece of advice, if your windshield is iced over in the morning, Poulos said turn on your defrost and wait for it to clear, never poor water on it.

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