How to Prep Your Vehicle for Winter

How to Prep Your Vehicle for Winter

Pennsylvania winters can be brutal and beautiful, often both at the same time. PA winter weather conditions can be rough on your car, truck or SUV. High performance, safety, and efficiency are perhaps more important (and may be harder to achieve) when temperatures dip and snow falls.

At Anthony Volk auto glass, we’ve been repairing and replacing windshields locally for more than 20 years now. We want all of our customer’s, friend’s and neighbor’s vehicles to serve them well throughout the winter here in SE PA. Whether you operate a construction vehicle for your business, a luxury SUV for your family, a sports car, an off-road vehicle or a daily-commuter car, there are steps you can take to improve the winter driving experience. Here’s our expert advice for winterizing your vehicle.

Ready for the Winter Roads in West Chester?

Vehicles can take a beating in winter, but you expect them (and rely upon them) to perform–and keep you and your family safe. Use these winter vehicle preparation and care tips to ready your car or truck for winter. With proper winter car care, you’ll come through even the worst weather with flying colors:

Tips for Winterizing Your Vehicle in PA

Winter vehicle preparation avoids the expense, inconvenience and possible danger of a blizzard breakdown:

  • Check your oil. It’s easy to forget you’re overdue during the busy holiday season. Do this before an unexpected, early snowstorm hits.
  • Fill or replace antifreeze.
  • Test and replace all windshield wipers if necessary. Don’t forget the back.
  • Replace wiper fluid with a freeze-resistant version.
  • Check battery charge. Batteries work harder in winter and in some vehicles, leaving lights on by accident (on cloudy, rainy days) can deplete the battery and leave you stranded.
  • Check your tires and switch to winter tires / snow tires if necessary.
  • Get routine car maintenance and have a mechanic inspect your brakes, four-wheel drive, wipers and blades, heating and defrost systems, hoses, belts.
  • Join an Auto Club or a roadside assistance plan.
  • Don’t try to go without chains if you may need them. At least have them in your trunk.
  • Repair any windshield cracks, leaks or other damage

Schedule windshield repairs before it gets too cold. Leaving even a small crack un-repaired can make it worse due to temperature changes, plus moisture, dirt and wear-and-tear accumulating in the damaged area. Remember, your car’s frontend structural integrity (including the passenger cabin) typically depends upon an undamaged, intact windshield. In newer vehicles, functionality can be impaired by a neglected windshield, since temperature sensors, defrosting mechanisms and more may run through your high-tech windshield.

Your Winter Emergency Roadside Bag

Why you need a road bag in your trunk:

Getting stranded by the side of the road, especially a dangerously busy highway or lonely rural byway is not as rare as you might think, here in the West Chester area. When pulled over on a heavily traveled interstate in rough weather conditions, safety (and your visibility to other drivers) are issues. Busy professionals may take a while to reach you. You’ll have peace of mind knowing you have your car emergency kit on board.

Here’s what to include in your roadside comfort bag:

  • Roadside flares (consider the LED type)
  • Gas can (no-spill version)
  • Jumper cables (ensure they’re the proper gauge)
  • Cellphone charger
  • Car battery charger
  • Flat tire inflater (type that’s safe to store in trunk, non-explosive)
  • Tire jack and spare tire
  • Extra fuses
  • Ice scraper and windshield de-icing spray
  • Cardboard (for traction to get un-stuck in snowdrifts)
  • First aid kit for possible injuries
  • Maps and/or hand held, portable GPS
  • Multi-tool
  • Blankets and/or some extra clothing
  • Flashlights (non-battery-powered or include extra batteries)

This list could, of course, grow to include many other items; but, these are the items that we suggest you carry in your car, at a bare minimum, to be prepared for a breakdown that leaves you on the side of the road.

WARNING: Vehicle Exhaust is Dangerous if Stranded in the Snow

Snow can block your vehicle’s exhaust system, allowing deadly carbon monoxide into your car. Limit running your car’s engine to 10 minutes per hour. Check periodically to ensure that no snow is blocking the exhaust pipe. Keep a window open slightly while running the engine.


As soon as you know you’re lost or stranded, before your cell phone goes dead: Change your voicemail message to something like this: I’m stuck in the snow at or near______. (Or on the way to_____.) When you get this message, please send help. Today’s date is _______.

Stay safe this winter driving the roads of PA!

About Anthony Volk Glass

At Anthony Volk Glass, we’re experts in auto glass installation, windshield repair and West Chester windshield replacement. We service all types of vehicles, from fleets of delivery vans to hard-working commercial vehicles to deluxe SUVs to family cars. Whenever you need auto glass service in the West Chester area of PA, contact Anthony Volk. We believe in vehicle glass perfection and specialize in keeping vehicles looking great and operating safely.

Auto Glass and Windshield Expert in PA

Whether you need auto glass for a heavy-duty vehicle, a windshield for your classic car, or high-tech auto glass for today’s computerized hybrid vehicles, we offer convenient, meticulous service. Our windshield replacement product knowledge, installation experience and craftsmanship are second to none. In many cases, we can come to you for mobile windshield services in southeastern Pennsylvania.

Contact Anthony Volk Glass today at (610) 436-9727 for all of your auto glass needs near West Chester, PA.

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Anthony Volk

Anthony Volk is a third generation auto glass installer born and raised in West Chester, PA. With over 20 years of personal auto glass experience he and his team will bring that experience to you.