EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The record cold temperatures expected on Thanksgiving can do a number on your car, specifically your battery. AAA Northeast is urging motorists to make sure their car is prepared for the weather.

Diana Imondi, manager of traffic safety programs at AAA Northeast, says anyone with a car battery over three-years-old should get the car battery and charging system tested. She said it takes twice as much current for a battery to turn over in freezing temperatures.

“The summer high temperatures do the damage on the battery but when we see temperatures drop, that’s when you get in your car and it just wont turn over,” Imondi said.

Owner of Rebello Automotive Professionals in Warwick, Michael Rebello, explained the need to check for and remove corrosion, which will extend the life of the battery.

“Removing corrosion from the battery creates a better connection to the battery so the electricity that flows through the battery won’t be obstructed,” Rebello said.

He added that each year in the cold months, his business on Bald Hill Road sees more customers who need to replace their old batteries. Typically in New England, Rebello says a car battery should last two to five years.

To remove corrosion, Rebello suggests using a simple solution of water and baking soda, however he encourages using professional products that are sold at your local auto supply store.

Here are some tips that AAA Northeast has for motorists:

  • Check the battery and charging system if your vehicle’s battery is more than three years old.
  • Check the coolant level in the overflow tank when the engine is cold.
  • Pay attention to the check engine light.
  • Make sure the oil was changed per manufacturer recommendations.
  • Examine tires for uneven wearing.
  • Use washer fluid that protects well below freezing temperatures.
  • Replace wiper blades that leave streaks or misses spots.
  • Drive reasonably until the engine comes up to operating temperature.