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How to Survive the Winter With a Truck

Author: Alexi Rafferty

Close Modal Button Alexi Rafferty

Alexi Rafferty

Alexi is a Copywriter at Enthusiast Enterprises, she got her degree in Marketing at UW-Stout. She drives a lifted 2008 Toyota Tacoma and a 2007 Nissan 350Z. If she isn't at work or in the garage you can find her binge-watching Netflix shows with a glass of wine and her dog Sox. Buying and modifying vehicles started as a fun, family activity and now it has consumed her life and her wallet.

December 31, 2020

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Winter kinda sucks, it's cold, it's snowy, temperatures are below zero for days, even weeks at a time. There are virtually no truck shows, the days are short, the nights are long, and most of us don't even wanna leave our houses for more than a few minutes at a time.

After all, why would you want to when it's literally so cold that a pot of boiling water will freeze before it hits the ground if you just throw it up in the air. With that being said, if you're as unlucky as we are here in Wisconsin, to live above the rust belt, you may be wondering what the best way to get your truck ready for winter might be.

Today, we're gonna be washing the salt of this one, to find out our top tips for winterizing your show truck. Regardless of where you live, if you need parts for your truck build, like wheels, tires, lift kits, bumpers, headlights, or taillights, all that good stuff you can find at customofsets.com


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Table of Contents

1. The Basics

2. Gas Truck Essentials

3. Diesel Truck Essentials

4. Windshield Washer Fluid

5. Coolant

6. Wheels and Tires

7. Ceramic Coating

8. Snow Brush


The Basics


All right, let me break it down. So here's the secret sauce when it comes to prepping your truck for driving in the winter. First off, you're gonna wanna get yourself some fuel stabilizer. Now STA-BIL is my choice, but really any fuel stabilizer will do. Just go ahead, toss that in the fuel tank.


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Next up, grab a couple of dryer sheets and stuff them in every nook and cranny of the truck, to help keep the mice out, and then after that, throw a cover on the truck, park at the shop, and head down to the Corner View's car lot, to pick up your winter beater, so you don't have to drive your show truck in the winter months.

That's it, psych, okay listen, so while Winter Daily will be the best way for you to maintain your show truck in the winter, we know that that's not always an option. 


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Gas Truck Essentials


Getting right into it then, one of the biggest things that you can do for your truck during the colder months is to make sure you're up to date on all of your preventative maintenance.

We're talking about things like doing a fresh oil change, swapping up the spark plugs if you have a gas truck, all of that good stuff. 


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Diesel Truck Essentials


On the flip side, if you have a diesel, verifying that your glow plugs actually work, kind of a big deal. There's absolutely nothing worse than going to start your diesel truck on a chilly Wisconsin morning, turning the key to cycle the glow plugs, and the truck not starting because your glow plugs didn't work and they didn't warm the block up enough to fire off.


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While we're on the topic, diesel guys. You probably already know this, but you're gonna wanna mix your fuel. Doesn't matter if you're blending it with Diesel 911, mixing number one and number two diesel fuels, the important thing is that you're doing something, to keep your diesel fuel from gelling up in the cold.

If you don't, you're gonna have to like take charcoals and slide them under the fuel tank, it's not fun. 


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Windshield Washer Fluid


While you're under the hood, there are a few other things you should take a look at it, as well. As small as it sounds, your windshield washer fluid can make a huge difference to a daily in the winter.

The bug blaster 9000 from your local gas station may be great for the summer months, but if it's not rated for colder temperatures, it's gonna freeze solid in the tank, the first time the mercury dips below the freezing line and you're gonna be straight up in for not a good time bro.


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One of the worst things in winter driving is going to clean the roads, slash off your windshield, and bam, you have no washer fluid because it's a brick in the tank. 


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Coolant


While you're in there, it is a good idea to take a peek at your coolant as well. Not only is it important to make sure you have enough coolant in the tank, but also make sure your coolant has the correct level of antifreeze.

Any local auto parts store should have a coolant tester available on the shelf, for just a couple of bucks, which will allow you to test how much antifreeze versus water is in your cooling system, ensuring that your coolant won't freeze when the temps dip.


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Frozen coolant can be catastrophic to engines, oftentimes cracking cylinder heads, blowing out seals, and otherwise just generally wreaking havoc in your engine. 


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Wheels and Tires


When it comes to grips and tires, your 14 wide mud grips may look great during the summer months but trust us when we say this, they're not an ideal choice for winter driving.

A super-wide tire acts in a lot of ways, like a ski or snowboard in the snow, meaning that rather than gripping and floating as they do in the mud, they often times just pack with snow and turn into a giant rolling pin wrapped around your wheel.


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This, paired with the fact that salt is absolutely awful for chrome wheels, means that a dedicated winter wheel and tire set up, is probably a good idea.

If you're concerned about how your truck will look, you can maintain the tire height, but we do recommend a narrower tire, that will help slice through the snow easier, ultimately maintaining traction and keeping you safe during the winter months. 


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Ceramic Coating


With all that being said, if you're absolutely 100% stuck on winter driving your chrome wheels, the best thing you can do to protect them, have them ceramic coated.

That’ll keep the salt, slush, and other road debris off of them, protecting the finish and ultimately keeping them looking good for years to come. 


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Snow Brush


And last but certainly not least, you're gonna want a snow brush. And we're not talking like the little dollar store ones here, we're talking like the big, 36 inches, extendable snow brush, that you can use to brush the snow off your lifted truck's windshield. 


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Got any winter driving tips? Let us know down in the comment section below.


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