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Jan. 3, 2019
This paid piece is sponsored by Luxury Auto Mall of Sioux Falls.
We probably can’t put it off any longer: Winter weather is here to stay.
But if you have been a little slow to accept that, it’s time to make sure you – and your vehicle – are ready.
Luckily, that’s as easy as a quick trip to Luxury Auto Mall of Sioux Falls, where an expert service team is ready for you.
Here are four things you should do to ensure you’re ready to ride this winter.
This is the easiest place to start. Come into the Express service area at Luxury Auto Mall anytime, whether you own a vehicle from Luxury or not. Technicians are trained to service all makes and models.
“We’ll check your tires for wear, your brakes, the fluids on your vehicle and your wipers,” service adviser Mitch Johnson said. “If additional work is needed, we’ll let you know and go from there, but the initial inspection is quick, easy and can be done along with an oil change or tire rotation if you need it.”
BMW, Mercedes-Benz and other luxury vehicle owners know this but sometimes forget: If you have winter and summer tires, you have to remember to change them out.
“Summer tires will operate, but they’re not good at all,” said Mike Chaplin, general manager at Luxury Auto Mall. “They’re a thin tread without as much grip on the road. You don’t get to maximize the driving ability of the car, and you’re putting yourself at risk for not being able to stop.”
The good news: It’s just a quick appointment to change them out, and for a small fee Luxury Auto Mall will even store your seasonal tires for you, so you can come back when the spring does and have them switched out again.
Even if your tires are all-season, if they’re worn it’s time to replace them.
“When we look at your tires, we condition them with a color system. If you’re green, you’re good. If you’re yellow, from March until summer you’re probably good, but if it’s from September to winter, then you have to ask if you’re really willing to risk sliding,” Chaplin said.
“If you’re red, I don’t care what time it is, the tire needs to be replaced.”
Your seasonal inspection will include making sure the lights are working on the outside of the vehicle.
But if you have any warning lights pop on, “we definitely want to check those out,” Johnson said.
And if you’re one of those drivers who tends to see a low-pressure light go on for your tires when the first cold snap arrives, there might be a way to avoid it.
“In the winter molecules shrink, and in the summer they expand, so you’ll see tire pressure change,” Chaplin said. “We put nitrogen in most of our tires when we service them, which neutralizes the expansion.”
As we know in South Dakota, weather can change fast, and forecasts aren’t always reliable.
As a driver, you need to prepare.
“If you’re going to jump in your vehicle and drive more than 100 miles, make sure your cellphone is properly charged, stay on major roadways, and my recommendation is that you have at least a half-tank of gas,” Johnson said.
The South Dakota Safety Council recommends packing a winter survival kit with the following items:
Luxury Auto Mall’s manufacturers all provide roadside assistance.
“Many of the plans will even tow you to the nearest dealership from wherever you are,” Chaplin said. “Just check with us to see what kind of coverage you have and what you’ll need to do to maintain it.”
And if the best-laid plans still result in a little winter misfortune for your vehicle, Luxury’s on-site body shop, ABRA Auto Body & Glass, is there to get you back on the road. Learn more below.
We probably can’t put it off any longer: Winter weather is here to stay. But if you have been a little slow to accept that, it’s time to make sure you – and your vehicle – are ready.