How to Prevent Your Car from Breaking Down in the Winter

Have you ever been in a situation where you needed to arrive at your destination very quickly, so you hop in your car and head out? Midway, your vehicle suddenly break down, and, to make things worse, it’s winter, and there are lots of frost build up on your car.

How did you handle the situation?

You’ll agree with us that you could have survived that scenario more easily if you knew how to keep your car in top shape during winter.

So then, here is a list of steps that will help you enjoy your vehicle in winter, leaving you less to worry about.

Why Do Cars Breakdown In Winter?

Winter is by far the coldest season of the year, as it’s synonymous with snow and frost. During this season, the risk on the road is high, hence the need to drive carefully.

At this time of the year, the road is icy until road salt is applied to lower the freezing temperature of the water and melt the ice.

Car Breakdown
Photo by Kaboompics .com from Pexels

So, What Are The Best Ways To Prepare Your Vehicle For Winter?

  • Service your car regularly.
  • Perform routine maintenance checks.

That said, highlighted below are possible causes of a car breakdown in winter and ways to reduce the chances of it happening to you:

1. Flat Tyres

It’s easy to get caught up with a flat tire during winter, and that is because, the conditions of the road are quick to deteriorate as water flows into the cracks on the road resulting in potholes. While driving, you could bump into these potholes as a result of poor visibility caused by the weather, and your tires feel the effect the most and start to wear out.

Despite the weather and road conditions, you can reduce the risk of a flat or worn out tire by keeping an eye on your tread and tire pressure.

Also, pay closer attention while driving to avoid as many potholes, debris, and bumps as you can- even if it would mean consciously reducing your speed limit.

Flat Tyre
Photo by Denny Müller on Unsplash

2. When The Car Would Not Start

One of the main reasons why your car would not start during winter could be because of the battery. Cold weather adversely affects the performance of your car battery; hence you should check it from time to time before the temperature drops completely.

Another easy and smart way to survive this situation is to store some jump lead cables in your car, should you need to solicit help from another road user.

Photo by MORAN on Unsplash

3. Car Engine Cut Out

When there isn’t enough fuel in the tank, or the EGR or air filter needs to be cleaned, your car engine starts to cut out. Similarly, a fuel mixture that is not rich enough can result in the same problem.

Here are other reasons why you could experience an engine cut out while driving:

  • Damaged Fuel Pump: the fuel pump is a device that channels fuel from your tank to the engine, supplying the fuel at a constant pressure to ensure that the engine runs properly. Hence, when it is damaged, an engine cut out is the result.
  • Broken or Dirty Fuel Injector: When dirt builds up within the fuel injector, it cannot function as it should and would affect the engine. Same as when it gets broken.

The fuel injector of a car sprays fuel into the engine of your vehicle with the aid of electronic controlled valves, which can open and close several times a second. Also, it has an atomizing nozzle that distributes fuel evenly for optimum combustion and effective running of the engine.

  • Corroded or Loose Wires: When the ignition fires inconsistently as a result of a disconnect in the wiring harness, your vehicle is likely to stall.

Being able to identify and interpret these causes, will help you have a peaceful driving experience in winter.

What Can You Do To Prevent A Car Breakdown In Winter?

If driving in winter gives you lots of concerns, here are more ways to prevent breaking down your car and stay in charge:


1. Top Up Your Engine Coolant

When you top up the radiator in your car, remember to add antifreeze to your engine coolant also.

That way, the fluid in your radiator would not freeze out, and you would reduce the risk of a breakdown or an overheating engine.

2. Crosscheck Your Lights

In winter, the days are shorter, and the nights are longer.

What that means is you’ll need your headlights more when it gets dark.

So, check your indicators, rear reflector, and all your car lights to ensure they are not damaged or malfunctioning.

Car Key

3. Service Your Car Regularly

Do you want to make it through the winter season with your car functioning well? Since your answer is yes, then you need to prioritise servicing your vehicle regularly.

By so doing, your car will be safe for driving; you will maintain the value of your vehicle and lower the running cost.

Which is what you want, right?

Other things that you can do is to test your car battery for optimal performance and fix your windscreen at the slightest sign of a crack.


How do you practice all that we have stated above and still have a horrible driving experience in winter? It’s less likely to happen!

So, give attention to these tips and use them to prevent your car from breaking down in winter.

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