7 Tips for Preparing Your Car for Winter from Ask Patty and MetLife Auto & Home®
Winter driving is never as easy as pie (which is really only easy if you buy it from a store). If you can navigate to your destination by avoiding treacherous snow-packed highways, then that's a great start for an easier trip. But as winter takes a turn for the worse, it’s always important to make sure your car is in the best shape possible before even hitting the road. Performing simple car maintenance and check-ups are a great way to save money and time.
Keep in mind: Although doing projects yourself can be fun and save you money—always think about the term “safety first” when you’re the “driveway mechanic.” AskPatty has joined with MetLife Auto & Home® to suggest these best practices to help keep you and your family safe and your car running at its best this winter.
1. Do your homework. Be sure you understand what’s involved in the project you’re planning. Read the owners’ manual or technical service guide and have the right tools on hand before you start the job.
2. Equip yourself. Have an ABC-rated fire extinguisher and a first-aid kit nearby when you’re working on cars.
3. Dress for success. Wear safety goggles to help prevent eye injuries from bits of metal, chemical splashes or errant sparks. Clothing should be close-fitting so it can’t snag or get caught in moving parts. Remove rings, watches and chains and tie up long hair for the same reason. Wear gloves if you’re handling fluids that contain strong chemicals. And always wear sturdy shoes—never sandals or lightweight tennis shoes.
4. Air things out. Ventilation is a must if you’re working on your car’s exhaust system. If your “shop” is your garage, park your vehicle so the tailpipes are venting outside, and keep the garage door wide open.
5. Turn on the lights. Make sure to have adequate lighting for your project, even during the daytime. Seeing clearly can help you avoid potential problems.
6. Lift it up. If you plan to do work under the car, park it on a level concrete surface. Use floor jacks that can more than support the weight of your vehicle; you’ll need at least two sturdy jack stands and blocks for the wheels. Always read the instructions for using the equipment properly.
7. Invite a friend. A buddy could lend a hand, keep you company—or maybe save your life. If a jack stand fails or a fire starts, you’ll want someone around to offer immediate assistance. (And save your socializing until the project is complete: Drinking and smoking are dangerous activities when you’re working on a car.)
Making sure you and your family are safe on the road this winter is of course a high priority, so make sure your car can get you where you need to go!
Did you know? By purchasing home or auto insurance through your employer’s benefit program, you could save money by taking advantage of group discounts. If your or your spouse’s employers offer access to MetLife Auto & Home's group insurance program, you could receive special savings - others who switched saved an average of $466/year!*
MetLife Auto & Home® has one $100 AMEX gift card along with a MetLife® blanket to give away to AskPatty readers. Just share the video at http://bit.ly/MLRoadSafety to Twitter or Facebook using the hash tags #MasteringAuto and #CarAdvice and share a car safety tip that is most important to your family for a chance to win! Giveaway ends January 23, 2015.
I am currently a member of the MetLife Auto & Home Insurance Blogger Program and this post is part of my involvement. While MetLife has provided me with materials and necessary resources to complete various activities, all statements and sentiment here at AskPatty are my own.
AMEX is not affiliated with MetLife Auto & Home and does not sponsor, endorse, approve, nor have any responsibility for this promotion. Each entrant into the giveaway completely releases Facebook. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, nor associated with, Facebook. No purchase necessary to enter. Purchase will not affect chances of winning. Taxes are the responsibility of the winner. Winner is selected by a random drawing. No substitutions or cash exchanges. Unclaimed prizes held for 30 days. Promotion may be conducted across several locations. Odds of winning depend on number of entries received. Void where prohibited. Entries must be received within contest period, available upon request. Age and residency requirements may apply. Entrant bears risk of lost entry ticket. Winner list is available upon request. Company bears no liability for winners’ use of prize. Acceptance of prize is waiver/release from liability.
*Savings based on MetLife Auto & Home’s 2014 countrywide research of its new call center customers’ annual average savings in 2013.
MetLife Auto & Home is a brand of Metropolitan Property and Casualty Insurance Company and its affiliates: Economy Preferred Insurance Company, Metropolitan Casualty Insurance Company, Metropolitan Direct Property and Casualty Insurance Company (CA Certificate of Authority: 6730; Warwick, RI), Metropolitan General Insurance Company, Metropolitan Group Property and Casualty Insurance Company (CA COA: 6393; Warwick, RI), and Metropolitan Lloyds Insurance Company of Texas, all with administrative home offices in Warwick, RI. Coverage, rates, and discounts are available in most states to those who qualify.