Winter weather means it's prep time for your car

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COLUMBIA - Winter weather will be here next week, so its time to start preparing cars for the cold. 

One local technician, Steven Heimericks, said its important to winterize cars before the winter weather comes, so you can be ready. 

"It's always better to be proactive than reactive," Heimericks said. "Keeping and maintaining your car and keeping it in working condition is always the best answer." 

Winterizing cars involves checking many parts including tire conditions, air filters and fuel filters. Heimericks said one of the most important things to look at is the antifreeze. 

"Make sure the coolant is got the proper freeze point on it so you don't have problems with antifreeze freezing or water freezing in your radiator," Heimericks said.

One local customer Marc Bollinger at A-Z Auto Repair said he gets his car winterized every year. 

"You don't want to be stranded or your car not start when its cold," Bollinger said. "And not only that you want to make sure you have decent tires on your car." 

Consumer Reports also emphasized the importance of checking tire pressures for the winter. They suggest getting winter tires, which can help with traction on slippery roads. 

"Winter tires typically have shorter tread life and generate more road noise than the all-season tires that your vehicle came with, but the extra safety they provide is generally worth the compromise," according to Consumer Reports. 

Also Consumer Reports suggests checking your windshield wipers to ensure clear visibility and warming up the engine before driving. 

Bollinger also stressed the necessity of making sure your car is ready for the winter. 

"I'm older I make sure I don't mess around, you gotta get that done," Bollinger said. "It's very important a lot of people don't realize."

Heimericks' final piece of advice is be prepared. 

"Have an emergency kit in the car in case you were to get stranded out in cold weather, at least you can stay warm, have a little bit of water, or maybe a snack," Heimericks said.