QOTD: How Do You Prepare for Winter's Wrath?

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy
qotd how do you prepare for winter s wrath

Alert readers will have noted by this time that I have lived my entire life in the refrigerator that is Eastern Canada. Snow appears early, sticks around like an unwelcome houseguest, only to begrudgingly depart sometime after Cinco de Mayo. My father often says his retirement plan consists of loading a snowblower into the bed of a pickup truck and heading south. The first place he stops where someone asks “What’s that?” is where he makes his new home.

On Friday, I regaled you with my tale of finally paying off a car (thanks for the kind words in the comments, readers). Since I’ll be keeping the Charger, and live well into the snow belt, I will soon need to get it ready for winter.

Some of you lucky sods reading this don’t experience snowy weather. Year-round sunshine and top-down driving is the order of the day for you lot. I don’t wish harm on any person but if any sunlover burns their hand on a metal belt buckle while strapping themselves into a convertible during the month of February, I may just grin while heaving shovelfuls of snow around the driveway.

Right now, I have a quartet of Goodyear Nordic winter tires mounted on a factory set of 18-inch Dodge Charger rims ready to be tossed on the inky-black sedan once temperatures approach icebox levels. Actually, it is better to install winter tires before the first snowfall, ideally once temperatures drop below 45 degrees Fahrenheit. Besides, waiting until the first storm of the year ensures an interminable wait for service at Canadian Tire as the entire town all shows up at the same time.

Tossing a shovel in the trunk doesn’t go astray, and it goes without saying that a couple of snow brushes and scrapers need to be tossed under the front seats to stand at the ready on frosty mornings. Again, readers in SoCal are probably laughing into their artisan bottled water.

Around here, though, such preparations are necessary. Many of you correctly recommended that I get the Charger undercoated immediately, given my failure to do so upon its purchase in 2012.

What do you do, if anything, to get your ride ready for the cruelest months?

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2 of 106 comments
  • Superdessucke Superdessucke on Oct 09, 2017

    Chicago here. Our winters seem to be getting warmer and warmer. Last year I didn't even bother with the snow tires and turned out correct. I guess that's one upside of Chinese manufacturing? This year I'm going to wax the car and that's about it, and that's more for UV protection. Maybe put a snow brush in the back for those few days where there's snow and ice.

  • Squib308 Squib308 on Oct 11, 2017

    I drive an AWD car, which helps, but out in the sticks and on unplowed roads, you can still get into trouble. I keep warm gloves, a fleece pullover, a waterproof jacket to go over it, waterproof warm boots, a tow strap, an avalanche shovel, a few MRE's, emergency blanket, and misc cold weather gear. It all lives in a small duffle bag in the trunk. Insulated gloves _in the glove compartment_ (!) if the car is really cold before it warms up. Obviously an ice scraper and snow brush. As far as mechanicals go, some sort of windshield wiper fluid that doesn't freeze until -40 degrees, keep it topped up. Check coolant is good in cold temps.

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