Importance of Having Your Vehicle Checked This Winter

With winter weather being difficult enough to drive around in, it is a good idea to ensure that your vehicle is operating at its absolute best. This winter, consider having an auto maintenance checkup at Ralph Thayer Automotive in Livonia. We'll ensure that the following auto components are working at their optimum.

Windshield wipers

Visibility is critical to safe winter driving. A rainstorm, sleet, or snow obstructing your vision can be a highly dangerous situation. It's generally a good idea to change your windshield wiper blades at this time, as new blades will do the best job for you this winter. Our parts and service consultants can install new wipers on your vehicle at the time of purchase for no extra charge.


Our trained auto technicians at Ralph Thayer Automotive will do a thorough diagnostic checkup of your car, including looking at wiring integrity, battery voltage, ignition timing and idle speed. All of these factors determine if your car is running at its optimum. During the tune-up, we will often replace spark plugs, various filters, and check the capped fluids.


It's critical that your tires have adequate traction to safely maneuver on what can be treacherous roads. A trained auto technician will check that your tire pressure is correct for winter roads and that you have sufficient tread on the tires to grip the road – the tire pressure changes with the temperature so this is important to pay attention to all year in Michigan. A tire that is 40% worn will loose about 60% of its traction in rain and snow.

Equally important is if you have the correct tires on for the winter weather, such as all-season or snow/winter tires. Ralph Thayer Automotive has very competitive pricing on new tires and we will even store your summer tires! We also offer winter tire and wheel packages. Contact our parts department for more information on our great tire deals.


Being able to stop quickly during winter weather is important to the safety of everyone on the road. Ensuring that your brakes are in proper working order will help guarantee that you will be able to stop quickly and efficiently should you need to. A brake fluid flush is suggested with brake service. Contact a service advisor to find out the recommended intervals for your vehicle.

Coolant system

It's imperative that your car have antifreeze protection in place during the winter months. This substance, which is made up of water and glycol, prevents the coolant from freezing, which in turn prevents the engine from overheating, as well as inhibits rust and corrosion within the cooling system. Changing the antifreeze solution and flushing out the old fluid prevents debris from clogging up the cooling system.

Windshield defroster

Cold weather outside and warm weather inside your car's cabin tends to fog up windows, so it's important that the defroster is working in tip-top shape.

Cabin Filter

Most vehicles now have a cabin filter, which catches material like dust and pollen, that fresh air passes through before entering your vehicle. If this filter becomes too dirty, you may notice odors or noise when the air fan is on. A dirty filter can also restrict air flow and right now that means less warm air to heat up the interior. Depending on how much you drive, the cabin filter should be replaced about once a year.

Get your appointment

Now that you know the many good reasons to get an auto maintenance checkup this winter, we look forward to seeing you at Ralph Thayer Automotive. Schedule an appointment online or call our service department at 734-425-5400 today!