Winter weather car care tips

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By Matt Maisel

It doesn’t matter if it’s a flat tire or a dead battery, your cars often times feel the brunt of winter weather.

However, all it might take is a trip to your neighborhood garage to save you hundreds of dollars.

Brock Warner, Sr., owner of United Tire and Auto Repair in Red Lion, says winter’s extreme cold and snowy conditions has kept his company busy every day throughout the season. On average, he estimates his towing company gets between 50 and 60 calls per day, vehicles with busted radiators, broken water pumps, flat tires and dead batteries.

“A lot of light duty stuff,” Warner says.

But it wouldn’t be light on your wallet. Any of those simple car fixes can cost you anywhere between $100 and $1,000, according to the website CostHelper.com.

“Everyone should go to whichever garage they go to and bring their car into get serviced,” Warner said of ways to prevent high replacement costs. “Check your anti-freeze to make sure it’s at correct temperature. Make sure they electrical system so it’s charging all the way it should. Have them check your battery charge, as well.”

More than anything else, Warner says most towing calls come from issues with tires.

“That’s where we make our money; the winches,” Warner said, alluding to when he tows cars out of ditches or snow banks. He calls them “winch-outs.”

“I never end up winching anybody who has snow tires. It’s always people with all-season tires or tires that are half-worn out.

“Make sure you get snow tires,” he pleaded.

Even after the towing occurs, Warner had one last piece of advice to save you money.

“We rarely find spare tires with air in them.”