Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Thanks to DSM (Deal Seeking Mom) for sharing these tips.

Frugal Car Care Tips for the Winter

winter car care 

Photo by Lisa Yarost
Raise your hand if you dread car care! Car care doesn't have to be expensive or stressful, but with the cold weather, our cars tend to take a beating. Here are a few helpful tips to keep your car going this winter without breaking the bank:

1. Keep your headlights clear with car wax.

Simply wipe ordinary car wax on your headlights. It contains special water repellents that will prevent the road spray from accumulating on your lights. The wax typically lasts around six weeks.

2. Squeak-proof your wipers with rubbing alcohol.

Wipe your wipers with a cloth saturated with rubbing alcohol or ammonia. This trick can fix badly streaking & squeaking wipers to near perfect silence & clarity.

3. Ice-proof your windows with vinegar.

Simply fill a spray bottle with three parts vinegar to one part water & spritz it on all your windows at night. In the morning, they'll be clear of icy mess and you can sleep in an extra five minutes! The vinegar contains acetic acid, which raises the melting point of water, preventing water from freezing on the windshield!

4. Prevent car doors from freezing shut with cooking spray.

With the rain and snow that's on the way, you may want to try using spraying cooking oil on the rubber seals around car doors & rub it in with a paper towel. The cooking spray prevents water from melting into the rubber!

5. Fog-proof your windshield with shaving cream.

Spray some shaving cream on the inside of your windshield & wipe if off with paper towels. You can also do this to your mirrors in your bathroom, works like a charm!

6. De-ice your lock in seconds with hand sanitizer!

Just put some hand sanitizer gel on the key & the lock and problems solved!

7. Weigh your car down.

Weigh your car down to gain added traction. Put a bag or two of cat litter in the truck (which also doubles for helping you get out if the car is buried in snow!). Throw a couple extra blankets in the back just in case you get stranded, along with a few bottles of water and snacks.

8. Check your spare tire.

With the cold temperatures we've had, your tires may be leaking. Be sure to check your spare tire and make sure it has adequate tire pressure. Learn to change your own tire, because doing so will allow you to get off the side of the road and to a safe location.

9. Check your fluid levels.

With the cold weather amongst us it is important to make sure your fluid levels are at their proper levels. There is nothing worse than being out of washer fluid with wet roads and no moisture falling to keep the windshield clean...nasty! Also, make sure that you have the correct anti-freeze in your radiator to avoid a major catastrophe! Watch this video from Advance Auto Parts for tips on checking your fluid levels:

10. Change burnt-out headlights.

During the winter months your headlights are on earlier than usual. Be sure to drive safe with proper lighting. Replacing headlights can be a super simple task if you know how to properly install the headlight. 

11. Take advantage of FREE services from auto parts stores.

Did you know that many auto parts stores offer FREE Services? That's right -- Advanced Auto Parts, Autozone and others offer FREE Services that include:
  • battery testing and installation
  • windshield wiper replacement
  • alternator testing
  • light check and installation
  • check engine light scan
Need a tool? Many auto parts stores will loan them to you for FREE! You can also have Advanced Auto Parts recycle your engine oil for you! How many of you change your own oil? {raises hand!} It's super simple and will take about half an hour to do at home. Just make sure to put the oil filter on hand tight and tighten that drain plug! Watch the video below and find out how to save yourself some time and money!

Marci is a wife and mother living in Cincinnati, Ohio. She blogs at, where she shares local and national deals to help her readers stretch their budgets!
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