Winterizing Your Vehicle

Posted on December 23, 2019 by Chris Duke

The following post was sponsored by the GM BuyPower Card from Capital One®. All opinions are my own and not directed by Capital One. To learn more about the GM BuyPower Card, click here.

Do you live in a cold climate, or plan to go on a road trip to one this winter? Make sure your vehicle is ready to take on the colder weather. Not doing so can be very dangerous, and it doesn’t really take much effort to keep yourself and your family safe while driving on snow and ice. Depending on the state of your vehicle, it may cost you a little bit but if you read on, I’ll show you a way you can use the GM BuyPower Card to help with some of these preparations!

There are actually a lot of things that you can potentially do to prepare your vehicle for winter driving, but my goal for this article is to give you the essentials so that you’re not overwhelmed and end up doing none of them! Let’s get started.

Get Serviced

First, if you haven’t done it in a while, be sure to have your car serviced. Make sure they check your battery because cold weather will reduce your battery’s output. If your battery hasn’t been changed in a while or you have any feeling that it’s been struggling lately, it’s best to replace it now. Make sure they check your oil, brakes, belts and hoses, and all fluids including your anti-freeze.


First and foremost, it’s important more than ever during the winter to maintain proper tire pressure. As for your tires, depending on the amount of snow and ice you’ll be driving on you may want to switch to snow/winter tires, or keep the ones you’re already wearing. If you don’t switch them up, just make sure your tire tread is good and then pick up a quality set of cables for them.

Speaking of tires, do you have a four-wheel drive vehicle? Chances are you didn’t use it much throughout the rest of the year. Now that you may actually use it, it’s a good idea to make sure there aren’t any problems. Test it out to make sure it engages properly.

Your Winter Toolkit

Having your vehicle ready for the winter is one thing, but make sure that you are prepared with the right tools. I recommend an ice scraper, a flashlight (don’t rely on your phone because it will drain your phone’s battery fast!), flares, jumper cables, tow straps, a tire inflator and pressure gauge, sand and a folding shovel, water, a blanket, and a first aid kit. It goes without saying that you should have your 12V/USB phone charger but it’s not a bad idea to get one of those battery jump starters that also has USB inputs so you can charge your phone up quickly in case your car won’t start.

Winterizing your vehicle might end up costing you a few hundred dollars, especially if you need to get new tires, replace a battery, and have your vehicle properly serviced. Just like how the holidays creep up on you, so can unexpected expenses like these.

That’s why I love the GM BuyPower Card. As an added bonus to cardmembers, Capital One and GM recently announced awesome new redemption options for the GM BuyPower Card that will help you plus up and take care of the vehicle you already have (especially with winter coming)! Cardmembers can now redeem their Earnings for statement credits of up to $250 per calendar year for qualifying purchases on vehicle care and GM extras. Qualifying purchases on vehicle care and GM extras include customer paid Certified Service (like my suggestions from tip one), parts and accessories purchased at an authorized GM dealership (think: winter necessities), as well as eligible GM subscription services, including most purchased OnStar and Connected Services plans and SiriusXM subscriptions.

Don’t forget that as a GM BuyPower Card cardholder, you can accumulate Earnings toward the purchase or lease of a new Chevrolet, Buick, GMC or Cadillac vehicle. Cardmembers earn 5% back on the first $5,000 of purchases each year, then 2% unlimited beyond that. Plus, there are no limits on earning, and your Earnings don’t expire for the life of the account.

Getting your vehicle ready for winter this year couldn’t be any easier!

Earnings Disclosures:

*Capital One, N.A. is the issuer of the BuyPower Card. General Motors is responsible for the operation and administration of the Earnings Program.

**BuyPower Card Earnings may not be used with fleet vehicle incentive programs or with some other offers and discounted sale programs, such as the GM Employee Discount Program, GM Company-Owned Vehicle Discount and GM Supplier Discount Program. Other exclusions may apply.

Alt Redemption Disclosures:

***Redeem your Earnings for statement credits of up to $250 per calendar year, January 1 through December 31, for qualifying purchases on vehicle care and GM extras. Qualifying purchases on vehicle care and GM extras include customer-paid Certified Service, parts and accessories purchased at an authorized U.S. GM dealership, as well as eligible GM subscription services, including most purchased OnStar and Connected Services plans and SiriusXM subscriptions. Does not include data plans. To redeem, log in to your BuyPower Card Earnings Account and select the Redeem page. Redemptions must be made within 90 days from the date your qualifying purchase was made. Please allow up to 3 business days after purchase for this transaction to appear on your BuyPower Card Account. Your statement credits are usually applied to your balance within 2 to 3 business days after redemption. All redemptions are final. Available on an open BuyPower Card Account in good standing. Combine with most other offers. Other exclusions may apply.

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