Nobody likes to think about snow and ice, but if we don't prepare now for the onslaught of winter we're gonna get caught with our snow pants down.

There's so much we need to do and check before the snow flies and the temps drop. And the one thing we all need to pay attention to the most is the one item that we count on the most every day--the car.

Having worked as a mechanic a number of years ago, I can tell you that neglect will cost you big, and that neglect will no doubt leave you and your family stranded during one of Old Man Winter's grumpiest days.  Been there, done that, got the frost bite. It's no fun at all.

First things first, if you're not mechanically inclined you'll need to find a 'trustworthy' mechanic to help prep the vehicle. Although there's a number of things I can do myself, there are some things that I have my mechanic do because he has the tools and the know-how. And honestly, my days of rolling in the grease and oil are far behind me. I can afford to have it done now, so that's my choice. By the way, if you want the name of my 'go-to' mechanic, shoot me an email and I'll tell you who it is (

Tires and battery are just a couple of things that we need to inspect and replace if necessary. Hoses and belts should be on that list too, not to mention anti-freeze level and protection ability.

What else? I tell you what, here's a site that will spell it out for you. Take care of your car now and you'll thank me later: