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Inexpensive ways to winterize your vehicle

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — You vehicle can take a big bite out of your monthly budget. That’s why it's important to make your car last. You also want it to be in good shape if you sell it.

Fortunately, there are some simple ways to keep your car running smoothly without spending much money.

The first thing to do is find a place you trust if you're having someone else do the work.  You can also look for coupons.  Depending on the business, they often change weekly.  We went to Jiffy Lube in Brownsburg to get some advice on the top ways to keep your vehicle in tip top shape.

"This is the time of year that always see a ton of cars coming in with that first cold snap or two. Oftentimes their tire light is on, so they panic. Generally it's only a loss of a few pounds of pressure due to the colder temperatures. Just fill it to the proper recommended amount which can be found on your door jam. Don't look on the side of your tires as that is the maximum amount of pressure, not the proper amount," said Matt Foy, District Manager Jiffy Lube of Indiana.

If you're looking to get the most bang for your buck, nothing can beat an oil change per the recommendations of your owner’s manual. It's also a good idea to check before it gets too cold outside because you don't want to become stranded.

"I'm here today to get an oil change. I like to stay on top of winterizing my car because I've had problems in the past. My tires have gotten too low, I haven't had enough windshield wiper fluid and forgot about the importance of de-icer in the fluid," said Teveyea Mitchell, Jiffy Lube customer.

To prevent having more troubles, people like Teveyea are starting to flood service centers. Your vehicle depends on fluids like anti-freeze which they can test for proper winter mixture, which means you might not have to change it.

There's transmission fluid to check and of course your oil. All of that should cost you well under $100, and it could save you thousands.

"So just changing it at the recommended interval goes a long way, but also most vehicles really now use the same viscosity of oil year round so there's typically not a need to change the oil just because the winter is coming," said Foy.

Once you check out all the fluids and make sure they are properly filled, then you want to see about the battery because an old one can stop working at almost any time. That can catch almost anyone off guard, including the professionals.

"Matter of fact I walked to work today! My cold cranking amps in my battery is pretty low, so I woke up to trying to turn it over to a dead battery," said Tiffany Wilson, Jiffy Lube Technician.

Depending on the condition of your battery, you can check it, charge it or in Tiffany's case, change it.  Another thing to change that is generally inexpensive, are your wiper blades.

"We see a lot of streaking on the windshields and we also have a lot of the windshield wipers cracking and breaking off," said WIlson.

Because wipers are relatively inexpensive, it's not a bad idea to replace them for winter time. All these things are vital to make your vehicle get you from point A to B without spending a lot of cash!

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