MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — We are still in the thick of winter weather and your car might not be dealing with the elements as well as it was at the start of the season.

But if you haven’t been taking great care of your car so far, it isn’t too late.

Nina Moini talked with Bobby & Steve’s Auto World operations leader Allen Sando. He offered three things you may be doing wrong every day during the winter that could add up to costly repairs.

First, take care of your battery. To make your battery last as long as possible, wait up to five minutes before you drive.

“The life expectancy of batteries, depending on quality, can be anywhere between 4 to 7 years. And just because new doesn’t mean it’s good. New batteries do fail,” Sando said. “People start taking off right away when it’s cold doesn’t give that fluid a chance to warm up, and you can blow hoses and seals out and power steering pumps.”

Those are problems that can cost you anywhere from $50 bucks to several hundred dollars to fix.

Secondly, cold weather impacts tire pressure. If you don’t keep them inflated, you can wear them down.

“With newer vehicles today, there are tire pressure sensors in the wheels telling you how low the tire is. You can damage those sensors, and those sensors cost upwards of $100 to $150 a piece,” Sando said.

Thirdly, the cold and snow can dirty the inside of your ride when you drag in all that slush. Sando says to buy cheap plastic covering to take care of this last problem, because it’s not just an eyesore.

“That stuff melts as the car heats up and you get water that just sits inside of there,” Sando said. “It can cause damage to floorboards and electrical wiring that’s underneath there as well.”

The salt used on the roads also wears away at the paint and what’s underneath it on your car. Sando recommended getting a car wash as often as once a week throughout the winter, even though it may seem pointless when we keep getting snow.

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