Winter is nearing, meaning it’s time to prep your car and your mind by knowing these things!

As Northlanders and upper classmen know, the Twin Ports area is infamous for vicious winters. Last winter, the Twin Ports received intense snowstorms leaving people and their vehicles stuck and stranded. By taking action to prep your car now, you can rest assured of a safer winter.

Make sure your windshield washer fluid is set for cold conditions. If you have washer fluid that is only good for summer temps, it would be a good idea to get some fluid that is good for at least -25 degrees Fahrenheit. This will ensure that your hose lines don’t freeze up and that you can consistently have a clean windshield.

Keep a bag of sand in your car so that if you do happen to get stuck, you can pour some sand behind your front tires for traction. This can help you drive over the snow when you get stuck.

Speaking of tires, it’s good to know whenever your vehicle is front, back, or four-wheel drive. If your car is front-wheel drive, you could upgrade your front tires to winter tires so that you can have a better grip in the snow. This will provide traction.

Your car’s owner manual or the sticker inside the driver’s door should provide the maximum tire pressure that you should use for your car. Otherwise, you can also find it in the tires itself. | Photo by Drew Kerner

Maintaining good tire pressure can also aids traction. New vehicle models can display your tire pressure for each tire. If your vehicle doesn’t supply that, a tire pressure gage might be handy. And in the event your tires do need air, most gas stations have air pumps in our area. Do not exceed the tire pressure that’s indicated on the tire itself.

By keeping a warm, heavy blanket in the back of your car, you can unsure that you’re warm if needed. It’s also not a bad idea to keep an extra sweater or two, too.

This may sound like common knowledge but keep a snow/ice scraper in your car so that you can scrape all of the ice and snow off of your vehicle to enable full visibility. And remember to never pour hot or boiling water on your windshield and that can cause your windshield to develop cracks or worsen current ones.

Some other helpful advice would be to start your vehicle 10 to 20 minutes before you need to leave so that your engine can warm up, and that your cab can warm up.

Having a shovel in the back of your car will also aid in removing snow around your vehicle if you happen to get stuck. You can get a majority of these things for pretty cheap at your local O’Reilly’s or AutoZone.

UW-Superior Chief of Police, Chief Eickman, says the UWS Grounds Crew is very responsive to the weather, and they work hard to clear all of the parking lots and roads clear of snow for safe travel, while also making sure that they’re safe as well.

“During periods of rapid or continuous snowfall, there are times when it is not possible to plow lots immediately,” says Chief Eickman.

However, if a vehicle gets stuck, it is up to the vehicle operator/owner to get it out as soon as possible at their own effort and/or expense to allow the whole lot to be plowed. You can grab some friends to help you get it out, but no University staff or University-owned vehicle can assist in towing or pushing out stuck vehicles. Vehicles that are left outside of parking spaces will be ticketed or towed if they interfere with lot clearing.