If you're moving from a part of the country where it's always golf season to an area where swimming pools and ski resorts get equal bidding, you may wonder how much of an adjustment it will be to transition from one to four seasons. While purchasing a new wardrobe can give you a good start toward braving colder weather, your vehicle may need a bit more attention or TLC after your move. Read on to learn more about protecting your car from the more extreme elements you'll experience in a northern climate, as well as what you can do to minimize damage as your car becomes acclimated to the area.
What cold-weather environmental factors can affect your vehicle?
For those in areas where snow or ice is common, paying attention to your vehicle's undercarriage and washing your wheel wells frequently is key. Many local departments of transportation will spread salt or magnesium chloride pellets or even liquid brine on the roadways to prevent the buildup of snow and ice. While these de-icers can prevent crashes and traffic jams by keeping roads clear, once they mix with water or slush and make contact with the metal of your undercarriage, they'll set a chemical reaction into motion that can cause corrosion, rust, or other serious problems.
For vehicles with exposed wiring harnesses, this corrosion could eventually eat through the protective rubber encasing these wires and cause major electrical problems. Other vehicles may begin to develop rust along the wheel wells, which can quickly spread to other parts of the vehicle and require extensive repairs. Brine that isn't washed from the rear of the undercarriage could eat holes in your vehicle's exhaust system, requiring you to purchase and install a new muffler or exhaust pipe.
What should you do to protect and maintain your vehicle after moving to a colder area?
Fortunately, avoiding these potential hazards won't add much to your maintenance schedule. First, you'll want to have your engine's coolant flushed and ensure that your new coolant contains anti-freeze agents that will prevent it from becoming thick or viscous upon exposure to the cold.
If your new home or apartment has an attached garage or other covered parking, you'll also want to consider rearranging your garage's contents so that you can store your vehicle inside. The less moisture and precipitation to which your vehicle is exposed, the slower any rust or other corrosion will be to develop.
Finally, you'll want to make sure your vehicle's undercarriage is regularly cleaned during winter months. Spraying down your briny or salty undercarriage with plain water can remove these corrosion-causing minerals and stop rust formation in its tracks.Share
7 June 2016
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