It’s probably been pretty hard for you to miss the signs – department stores are fully decorated, holiday-flavored beverages are flying over coffee shop counters and commercials have taken a sharp turn toward Santa’s Village. It’s a bit hard to believe but impossible to ignore – winter is just around the corner.

We would understand if many of our customers were still in denial (we’re not quite ready yet ourselves) but there’s simply no getting around the fact that icy streets, blustery winds and snowy driveways are just a few short weeks away. The last thing that our Toms River Mazda dealership wants is to see you get stuck in the middle of it all. As November winds on, keep in mind these top tips for getting your vehicle ready for winter.

  1. Change your car’s battery and be sure that the charging system is operating without a hitch. It takes a lot of energy to power through weeks of winter, so it’s a smart idea to give your vehicle a head start.
  2. Check that wipers, defrosters and heaters are all in working order. While most manufacturers recommend replacing wiper blades every six months, it might be a good idea to purchase winter wiper blades and swap in cold weather washer fluid.
  3. Replace antifreeze in your vehicle’s cooling system. Manufacturers recommend that drivers put this on their to-do list every two years.
  4. Check brakes along with tire tread depth and tire pressure. In fact, throughout the winter, experts recommend checking tire pressure on a weekly basis.
  5. Similarly, make sure that you are up to date on oil and filter changes throughout the winter. Drivers may even opt for “winter weight” oil for greater peace of mind.
  6. Check your exhaust system for carbon monoxide leaks. This can become a particularly dangerous problem in the winter as windows are nearly always closed while travelling.
  7. Take care of tune-ups before winter hits. If you don’t, you’ll likely find that winter weather will make any existing concerns even worse.

Finally, be sure that you and anyone who hitches a ride in your 2016 Mazda CX-5 sticks to one of the most important safety rules no matter the time of year – always wear a seatbelt.