As our southern brothers and sisters get ready for winter (yes, there is a winter in the south), there are some things to keep in mind.
For one thing, those of you that have never spent a winter in the south, it’s not all Florida! Tennessee is the one of the coldest places there is, regardless what the thermometer says. It is so humid, it feels like the air freezes around you. It also works that way on the roads. There is not the snow that other parts of the country get, but there is ice. It’s not always there, but it can sneak up on you.
Good tires are a must. A good all season tire is the minimum, and they should have the tread depth checked at this time. Not a bad idea to check the balance and through in a rotate for good measure.
If you have a winch, you will probably end up being the “nice guy” at some point, and have to come to the rescue of one of your follow motorists. Don’t forget to check the cable, electrical connections, switches and all the things in your accessory bag. Check it now.
Get the Right Accessories
Open up the tool box, and make sure you have the essentials. Tow rope, tarp, kitty litter (for traction on the ice), a good jack and some basic hand tools. Better to know what’s in there before you need it. You should also make sure you have a blanket and some emergency food in the cab.
Prepare Your Truck
Now, let’s talk about the truck itself.
Oil… Duh. Change it, and use the recommended winter weight, this makes it easier on the engine when it’s cold. I know we cover this a lot, but it really is the best thing you can do for your vehicle. Don’t skimp on it, good oil and good filters are always worth the cost.
Transmission fluid should be checked at this point. Check the color, is it brownish? It might be time for a change. While you are under the truck, check all of your u-joints, they tend to snap at the worst possible times.
Check the antifreeze. It’s called antifreeze for a reason, make sure its protecting down to the temperature you expect to be in.
Check your differentials for play, and top off the fluid if needed.
Check the brakes. Icy roads are not the place to find out that there is a problem.
Check your windshield for cracks and chips, swap out those old wipers and top off the washer fluid, and you should be ready to roll.
Have fun, be safe, and enjoy your truck this winter!