Winter can be rough on cars, so unless you live in a warm or moderate climate, here's a list of things you can do to make sure your vehicle is ready for the upcoming cold season.
STEP 1: Don't put off a 30,000-mile full service, if your car is due.

STEP 2: Flush the cooling system and replace the coolant.
STEP 3: Replace the windshield wiper blades. Put windshield washer fluid in the windshield washer reservoir (plain water will freeze).

STEP 4: Have the battery serviced (clean the battery terminal ends and add water) and load-tested to check its ability to hold a charge. If the battery is more than 4 1/2 years old, replace it.
STEP 5: Use a tire gauge to check the tire pressure. Air contracts with cold, and the tires may become low as the temperature drops.
STEP 6: Make sure there is air in the spare tire and that all the proper tire-changing equipment is in the trunk.

STEP 7: Make sure the tires are in good condition. If you are not sure what this means, ask a mechanic (in a shop that doesn't sell tires) for an opinion.

STEP 8: Check the lights, heater and defroster.

STEP 9: Keep the gas tank as full as possible to prevent moisture from freezing in the gas lines.

STEP 10: Get a brake check if you haven't had one in the last six months.

STEP 11: Put together an emergency winter kit for the trunk of your car: blanket, extra boots and gloves, ice scraper, small snow shovel, flashlight and kitty litter (for traction when stuck in the snow).