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Cars vs. cold: Keeping you on the go

Updated: Tuesday, January 7 2014, 06:29 PM EST

By: Adam Del Rosso

Not only can the cold air take a toll on our bodies, but it can do a number to our cars as well.

If you have a garage, mechanics say it’s best to use it. But if not, they say the first step is to make sure all the car’s fluids, including anti-freeze and gas, are topped off.

Gene Ferguson, owner of Ferguson Tire Services, says adding an additive to your fuel tank to displace any water is important too. He says it makes sure the fuel flows naturally to the engine without the water freezing.

He adds that in cold temperatures, fluids can thicken up and take longer to move through the proper pipes. Starting your car a few minutes before driving will help, but what if the car still won't start?

“On a cold, cold day, normally you're going to expect it to be the battery. If you have another vehicle nearby, use your jumper cables to give the car a little more energy. If that starts it up, fine. Drive it. But keep in mind, if you park it and leave it then come back, it may have the same problem,” he says. If that happens, then he says it may be time for a new battery.

Ferguson tells NEWS9 it may be a pain to take care of cars in the short term, but it will be worth it in the long run.

If you happen to break down on the side of a road, officials say having an emergency kit is critical. That kit can include these things and more:

  • Jumper cables
  • Cell phone
  • Car charger for phone
  • Flashlight
  • Energy bars
  • Blanket
  • Ice scraper/brush

For more on winter safety, visit www.ready.gov/winter-weather

Cars vs. cold: Keeping you on the go

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