With winter creeping closer, it’s time to think about certain maintenance tasks to do before the season hits. One of the big ones: getting your car’s battery and alternator inspected. Checking that off will hopefully save you the trouble of being stranded with a dead battery. There are also a few other ways you can be prepared going into winter:

Get the battery checked. When temperatures are colder, your engine needs more power to start, but the cold also slows down the chemical reaction in the battery. Because of that, people may have trouble starting their car, or it takes a couple turns to get the engine going. A car battery, on average, lasts about 4 years. If it’s been longer than that, it’s probably time to get the battery changed.

Keep jumper cables in your car. In case you do get stranded with a dead battery, having these in your car will be a lifesaver. They’re good to have anyway in case a friend needs a jumpstart too.

Check around the battery. Even if a battery’s charge is fine, the parts around it can start to be covered in corrosion or loosen, which causes it to fail. Make sure all the connections and parts around the battery are clean. If the corrosion build-up becomes too much, it can disturb your battery’s connection to the engine and stall the car.

Avoid a lot of short drives. If the alternator doesn’t have enough time to charge the battery fully, then its more at risk of not starting. As mentioned before, your engine needs more power to start in frigid winter temps, and a partially charged battery might not be enough. Make sure to also unplug any accessories while not driving and turn off interior lights to avoid accidentally draining the battery.

Give us a call or use our online scheduler to get your winter inspection appointment at Superior Service Center. We’re located in Eagan, MN and Apple Valley, MN, and have been serving the area since 1982.