There’s nothing worse than having issues with getting your car started. But having these issues on a cold, winter morning? Even worse! Everett Transmission has a few tips to help get your car started on those cold New England days.

To better prevent car issues in the winter, it’s beneficial to understand why cold weather makes it more difficult to start your car. For most cars, there are three common reasons and a fourth that will only affect older models.

  1. To keep it simple, car batteries and cold weather don’t mix well. Your car’s battery will generate less electrical power when it’s colder out.
  2. When temperatures get too low, your engine’s oil will become thick and won’t move about the engine parts as easy. This causes your battery to have to do more work before your engine will begin to work.
  3. While there shouldn’t be any water in your fuel lines, it does happen. If this happens in cold temperatures, that water will freeze and prevent fuel from flowing.
  4. If your car was built before the mid 80’s, there’s a good chance your carburetor was used to mix small portions of fuel with the air in your engine. Because carburetors are delicate pieces of machinery, they don’t normally work that well in the cold. This is because the nozzles can get clogged with ice or because the fuel isn’t evaporating correctly. Keep in mind, if your car was built in the last 20 years, this shouldn’t be an issue for you.

Prevent Cold-Weather Starting Issues

  • For batteries and engine oil that aren’t a fan of the cold, keep them warm as much as possible. Rather than parking outside, try to keep your car parked in a garage. For those without a garage, try to park near or under something large. Because of the physics of heating and cooling, parking under a large tree or in an open carport can warm your car by a few degrees.
  • The type of car you own and drive will depict which type of oil you should be using in winter conditions. If you’re unsure, check your owner’s manual. If you’re still unsure, check with a professional!
  • At most gas stations or auto stores, you can purchase dry gas for cars and fuel conditioner for diesels. Each of these helps to prevent your fuel line from freezing or gelling. Before you add dry gas or fuel conditioner, check with your gas station before pumping. Their fuel may already contain such additives.

Getting Started

You’ll still start your car how you normally would, but you’re going to want to be a bit more careful during the cold weather.

  1. When starting your car during the winter, the battery is going to need the extra juice to turn the engine over. To help, make sure that all electrical accessories, like headlights, heater, etc., are turned off.
  2. If at first your engine doesn’t catch after you turn the key, don’t fret! To prevent overheating, crank it a few more time, but then stop.
  3. If your engine still hasn’t turned over, don’t give up just yet. Let your battery rest for a minute or two and try to start it again.

If you’re still having issues with getting your car running, there may be an underlying issue. Contact the expert mechanics at Everett Transmission! We are happy to identify the issue at hand and recommend auto repair services for your car. To schedule an appointment with us, call us at 617-387-9558 or by filling out our online contact form.

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