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Car Winterizing 1If your car needs a tuneup or is due for its regular service get it done now Bad hoses belts water pump spark plug wires distributor cap etc can leave you stranded in the winter Better to fix them at your convenience than after youve been sitting in your stalled car for three hours waiting for CAA Just kidding No one has ever had to wait three hours for one of your tow trucks have they Naahh 2Make sure your battery and charging system are up to snuff Your mechanic should check the battery charging system and belts If you find that you need a new battery get the biggest meanest ugliest battery that will fit in your car Two things to remember about batteries First the battery that started your car easily in the summer may not have enough oomph to do it in winter when the oil isnt as fluid as it was last July And secondly batteries lose power as the temperature drops So not only do you need MORE power to start the car in winter you also get LESS power from the same battery Batteries are rated by a measure called cold cranking amps CCA the maximum number of amps that the battery can deliver at zero degrees F for 30 seconds Good powerful batteries are rated at or above 600 CCA Weve never really liked this CCA thing because some batteries rated at 600 CCA can just barely make the 30-second criterion and some can pump it out much longer--clearly better batteries Along come our pals at Consumer Reports When they rate batteries they do the CCA test and report how
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