Typically , the weather during winter months in the Puget Sound area is pretty mild, but the 2022 season has started abruptly without warning. Normally, we have it pretty good in terms of experiencing a fairly mild climate, but don’t let the past seasons distract you. Remember just how important it is to Winterize your Subaru, especially with these temperatures. There really is no better time than now to beat the winter freeze, and this season it will be more important than ever.
For many of us we are watching the traffic return to normal, more people back on the roads, and when the weekend comes, it’s time to be out and about in preparation for the holidays. For some this will also push many of us east, over the mountain passes for some skiing, or escape to some more sun, but we all will probably not escape the cold. Your Subaru is the perfect vehicle for Winter, let’s get it ready!
Just like it’s better to disconnect the hose from the spigot at your house before it freezes, it’s really better to service your Subaru prior to it freezing outside. While this season has already brought those temperatures, there really isn’t a wrong time to service your Subaru for Winter. Be ready, this year has been full of distractions and it will be all too easy to skip this on accident.
*Testing the Coolant freeze protection level.
*Inspecting the condition of the coolant and cooling system including the PH levels.
*Checking and servicing as needed the engine oil.
*Checking the tires for tread depth and proper air pressure.
*Testing the battery. If its a 2015 and newer model Subaru and its still OE, replace it!
*Inspecting and ensuring all of your Subaru’s lights work so you can be seen in the dark.
*Checking the wipers for smearing, streaks or tears in the blade.
*Inspecting the rest of your Subaru’s vital fluids.
*Inspecting all rubber components including belts and hoses for age and wear.
Depending on how you will use your Subaru this winter, we may want to consider other items.
*Do you need Snow tires?
*Are winter wiper blades a better option for you?
*Do you have any long road trips planned to see family during the holiday season?
*If your Subaru has over 150k, have the hoses and radiator ever been replaced?
Items that seemed to work just fine yesterday, can quickly fail during or after a cold front rolls through, the most common things are weak batteries preventing your Subaru from starting and aged coolant hoses turning into a leak or worse an overheat situation. Understanding where your Subaru needs are ahead of winter is really the best way to get through it.
Keep in mind if you own a Subaru with a Tire Pressure Monitoring System, it’s not uncommon to see the light come on during a cold morning, as the temperature drops so does the tire pressure and it may need to be corrected.
Here are some tips for winter driving in the NW with your Subaru
*Try to have more than ½ a tank of gas as much as possible, this minimizes condensation in the fuel tank and helps rear traction as well.
*Try not to drive in the snow if your tires have less than 4/32 of tread life remaining.
*When you shut the Subaru off for the night, first turn off your wipers and headlights.
*When you start your Subaru up cold in the morning or after it’s sat for the day, say up at the pass, make sure your wipers are off and the lights are off prior to starting this is not only good for the battery but it also prevents the wipers from becoming damaged.
*If you’re parked for the day and it’s frozen outside, lift your wipers off of your windshield so they don’t freeze to the windshield, be sure to put them back before you drive away.
*Make sure you have an emergency kit in the car especially if you are taking a road trip, this includes a blanket, water and a flashlight.
*Deicer is a great thing to have around this time of year, not only can you use it to deice the window, it can help with frozen door locks and stubborn doors, keeping a can not in your Subaru is the best advice here.
If you own a newer Model Subaru and you are looking for a tire chain alternative you might try the Auto Sock
Remember after a trip up the pass, or after a lowland snow event it’s very important to wash your Subaru, the chemicals used to deice the roads can be very harmful to your Subaru’s exterior.
Whether you need to have your Subaru winterized or just need an oil change before the weather gets bad, we now have two locations available to serve you; Kirkland and Bothell! You can choose which location in the drop down below.
– Joe Malinosky