a mountain road through a windshield

How can I prepare my Toyota vehicle for a winter road trip?

Vehicle preparation checklist for winter driving 

How can you prepare your Toyota vehicle for a winter road trip? Keep reading below to view our vehicle preparation checklist for winter driving. Toyota Palo Alto is your Toyota dealership in Palo Alto, CA. 

What to do before driving in the winter around California 

If you’re planning on driving North through areas with snow or east through the mountains, then you should consider following this checklist for what to do before you leave. If you stay in Palo Alto this winter, our only recommendation is to replace your windshield wipers once every year or so and to make sure to top off your vehicle’s fluids. Stay on top of oil changes and other routine maintenance. 

a road with snow and pine trees

Winter vehicle preparation checklist 

  • Consider winter tires. If you’re going to be driving on snow and ice, your current tires may not cut it. Especially if your vehicle is equipped with summer tires, which tend to do well here in California. They won’t have the traction you need on slippery surfaces. 
  • Get a tire rotation. If you aren’t going to replace your tires, the next best thing you can do is get a tire rotation. This will help keep wear and tear even on your tires.  
  • Pack your winter weather gear. There are two main complaints with winter driving. The first is that the roads get slippery, and the second is that you can get snowed into a parking lot. Pack a shovel in your trunk just in case you need to shovel your way out. Other winter gear like warm clothes, snacks, or a car safety kit are never a bad idea. 
  • Inspect vehicle lights, heating systems, windshield wipers, and fluids. Take all the precautions that you would normally take while preparing for a road trip, and add in a quick check of your vehicle’s heating system. You won’t want to drive in cold weather without heat.