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4x4 Winter Product Guide: Essentials For Vehicle Survival in the Cold Months

Posted in Features on September 7, 2017
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Photographers: Courtesy of Manufacturers

You’ve heard about winter tires, sporting that snowflake certification to signify they are winter-ready, such as the Toyo Open Country C/T. You’ve heard about lights designed for better eyesight during winter snow. There are windshield scrapers (no, not credit cards), winter-based emergency kits, and seasonal clothing. You know how to prep a vehicle for winter, such as checking fluid levels and hoses, and you know how to put it away for the season. But what about the products that protect the vehicle, improve performance, clear the road, and keep the interior warm, among other necessities, when you’re planning to use it in winter? They’re right here.

Vintage Air Heater Retrofit for Toyota FJ40

Cold product: Is your ’68-’83 Toyota Land Cruiser FJ40 minus a heater (and A/C)? This Gen IV SureFit kit equates to a bolt-in system with electronic controls—and with improvements over the previous SureFit model.
Cool tech: A bigger condenser assembly and redesigned mounting bracket (and with pulleys and optional high-output alternator available), plus separate cooling and heating coils combined with a blend-air door are among the gets. There’s also a microprocessor-controlled ECU.
Company’s chill quote: “This ‘electronic brain’ not only allows for precise control of the Gen IV’s door stepper motors, but it also monitors the internal A/C coil temperature with a thermistor, eliminating the need for a traditional thermostat and capillary tube, simplifying installation and operation.”
Cost: Around $770.
Contact: Vintage Air, vintageair.com

Interior Heater from Arctic Fox

Cold product: A warm interior and frost-free windows? Yes, to all the above.
Cool tech: This interior heater mounts on the floor or under the dash, and can be used in various types of vehicles, including light-duty and recreational.
Company’s chill quote: “900 watts, 120-volt AC, compact size, 3,000 Btu, and includes a blower fan.”
Cost: N/A
Contact: Arctic Fox, showmetheparts.com/phillipstemrohd

Jump Starter and Power Bank from Truck Gear

Cold product: Your battery died, and it’s cold out there. And you’re alone out there. Truck Gear by Line-X offers the Jump Starter and Power Bank, which is a portable battery charter. Bonus points: You don’t need a set of jumper cables and a second vehicle, and there are two USB ports for also charging electronic devices.
Cool tech: For the price of admission, you’ll get 12-volt DC and 110-volt charging cables, plus an LED flashlight with a hazard/strobe setting. Works on gas engines up to 9.0L and diesels up to 5.0L.
Company’s chill quote: “18,000-mAh lithium polymer battery provides 300 cranking amps/600 peak cranking amps of starting power.”
Cost: MSRP is $140.
Contact: Line-X, linex.com

Cabela’s ATV/UTV Snow Plow

Cold product: This guy is pretty much one-stop plowing, since it includes a snow blade wear bar, universal plow mount, snow flap, corner markers, and push tube.
Cool tech: The universal mounting system means the push tube attaches under your rig, then double-connect pins attach and remove the plow fast and easy. The 12-gauge steel plow blade comes in 50-, 60-, and 72-inch sizes.
Company’s chill quote: “Bright-orange corner markers help locate the plow path to keep the plow blade from impacting curbs and other solid objects. Corrosion-resistant powder-coat finish.”
Cost: Starts at $350 for the 50-inch blade.
Contact: Cabela’s, cabelas.com

Summit Racing Interior Heaters

Cold product: It’s cold inside that vehicle, and you don’t have heating.
Cool tech: This line of automotive heaters features a multiple-speed fan, and connects to the wiring and plumbing you already run. Various Btu offerings exist, including 12,000 or 28,000 grille vent, and up to 40,000 triple front vent.
Company’s chill quote: “They’re a great alternative to replacing a worn-out or hard-to- reach heater core.”
Cost: They start at about $150.
Contact: Summit Racing, summitracing.com

SnowEx Spreader for Removing Snow and Ice

Cold product: A scenario: Snow and ice on the road, like, your driveway, so you can’t get to the trail, or the route to the trail is coated with snow and ice. Enter: A SnowEx spreader, such as the SR-210, which can be attached to pickups, SUVs, ATVs, and other vehicles. It has a 25-foot range for spreading bulk stuff, such as bagged rock salt or calcium flakes.
Cool tech: This particular spreader has wireless controls, so you won’t need to route a wiring harness to the cab; it’s plug-and-play. There’s a 2-inch receiver mount, but other styles of mounts are available.
Company’s chill quote: “An electric motor drives the spreader—meaning no engines to fuel and no pulleys, sprockets, belts, or chains to maintain. The patented low-maintenance, dual 12-volt electric drive/maximum torque transmission system is completely sealed within a weather-resistant enclosure.”
Cost: You’re looking at $833.
Contact: SnowEx, snowexproducts.com

SnowEx SR210 3 Cubic Foot 12 Volt Wireless Remote Control Snow and Ice Melt Hitch Mount Broadcast Rock Salt Spreader

Flip Cap Receptacle from Zerostart

Cold product: This flip cap receptacle functions as a solid connection between the engine-block heater and a standard 120-volt outlet. You’ll have access to the heater plug via six aftermarket cords.
Cool tech: Silicone connector plug types for standard engine-block heaters.
Company’s chill quote: “Provides convenient access to plug in the engine-block heater, eliminates dangling power cords; low-profile flip cap receptacle.”
Cost: N/A
Contact: Zerostart, showmetheparts.com/phillipstemrohd

Battery Heaters from Temro

Cold product: This will take the guesswork out of cold-weather starts.
Cool tech: The heaters put direct electric heating on the battery, and are available as blanket style (wraps around the battery), silicone pad (for under the battery), or box battery warmers (a preset thermostat to 80 degrees Fahrenheit).
Company’s chill quote: “They maintain available cold cranking amps and efficient direct-heat transfer, improve battery recharge time, and can be installed in sub-zero temperatures.”
Cost: N/A
Contact: Temro, showmetheparts.com/phillipstemrohd

Warn Plow for ATVs and UTVs

Cold product: For when nature calls—and it’s calling for a versatile plow system.
Cool tech: Various blade lengths and plow styles are available, plus you can pick from different plow mounting configurations.
Company’s chill quote: “Accessories such as plow skids, corner markers, control flaps, and lifting mechanisms.”
Cost: Blades start around $239.
Contact: Warn Ind., warn.com

Slush Floor Mats from Mopar

Cold product: Not all floor mats are created equal. Like, these were designed with knowing how slush performs and transforms and deforms once it gets inside your Ram, so they’re meant to maintain a dry interior.
Cool tech: The mats cover the entire footwell area. There’s also a raised Ram’s head on the mats. Not a real one, that is.
Company’s chill quote: “Set includes two front row mats and two second row interlocking mats, providing full floor coverage.”
Cost: $125.
Contact: Mopar, mopar.com

Flex-a-lite Mojave Heater

Cold product: This universal, compact heater produces 12,000 Btu.
Cool tech: It connects to your engine’s cooling system, like how a factory heater would. And the internal electric fan draws 8 amps and makes 130 cfm of airflow.
Company’s chill quote: “An optional plenum is available to help direct airflow and connect ducting for defroster events.”
Cost: $265.
Contact: Flex-a-Lite, flex-a-lite.com

Synthetic Lubricant with PTFE from Permatex

Cold product: You know how your grandma always complains that her joints ache in the winter? Worn out components, such as the door latches and hinges, suspension bushings, cams, O-rings, mechanical linkages, or other moving parts, sound a lot like your grandma when it’s cold out.
Cool tech: This lubricant utilizes a grease-based formula.
Company’s chill quote: “Withstands temperatures as low as minus 45 degrees Fahrenheit and is safe for use on most surfaces. It will last long and is easy to use. Just shake, spray, and brave those winter roads.”
Cost: $8.99.
Contact: Permatex, permatex.com

WeatherTech Floor Mats

Cold product: These All-Weather floor mats can trap snow (and therefore the water it will turn into). Plus, during the rest of the year, they’ll collect mud, sand, and other elements, protecting the rest of your interior.
Cool tech: Deeply sculpted channels do the heavy lifting of collecting the mess.
Company’s chill quote: “The All-Weather floor mats are engineered to prevent curling and cracking in subzero weather.”
Cost: Depends on your make/model, but figure it starts around $45.
Contact: WeatherTech, weathertech.com

Severe Gear Synthetic Lubes from AMSOIL

Cold product: The name of the product says it all: Severe Gear Synthetic Extreme Pressure Gear Lubes.
Cool tech: Severe Gear is available in five viscosities. In addition to cold-weather performance, they’re good for towing, off-roading, high-ambient temps, and more. In other words, this excels in hot and cold extremes.
Company’s chill quote: “An exclusive blend of high-viscosity, shear stable synthetic base oils and an extra treatment of high-performance additives. They’re engineered to protect gears better than conventional gear oils, resisting acid, carbon and varnish formation, and oxidative breakdown.”
Cost: Starts at around $16.
Contact: AMSOIL, amsoil.com

Seat Heater from 4 Wheel Parts

Cold product: This universal-fit carbon-fiber seat heater goes in between the seat cushion and seat-cover material. As in, your vehicle doesn’t have a heated seat? There’s this.
Cool tech: It has a built-in thermostat, giving you high, low, and off settings. The heating pads (the kit comes with upper and lower) can be cut to fit for one seat. There’s also a relay harness with fuse that’s already wired.
Company’s chill quote: “Fully water-resistant and poses no problem with damp winter clothes, spilled beverages, or wet pets.”
Cost: Around $85.
Contact: 4 Wheel Parts, 4wheelparts.com

Agri-Cover Snowsport Plow

Cold product: You’ve already got a 4x4—how about putting it to work? The Snowsport HD Utility Plow will easily attach to your vehicle and allow you to bypass using a snow blower or shovel.
Cool tech: You’ll get a model-specific front mount, aluminum blade, push frame, and angling interceptor. There are no hydraulic or electric parts. One thing to note: Suspension mods, like bigger tires and lift kits, could result in improper fitment.
Company’s chill quote: “Now you can plow from the comfort of your heated truck or SUV and clear snow in less than half the time.”
Cost: Starts at $1,650.
Contact: Agri-Cover, agricover.com

Zerostart Engine Block Heater

Cold product: Editor Brubaker said of the benefit of having an engine block heater in winter, your engine “starts like a summer day.” He’s a poet, him.
Cool tech: They help with increasing the oil circulation to help with lubing engine parts faster, and a warm engine means a warmer interior, faster. Not to mention, less engine wear.
Company’s chill quote: “Provides direct heat to the engine block. Ensures quicker winter starts.”
Cost: N/A
Contact: Zerostart, showmetheparts.com/phillipstemrohd

You might also need…
While we were on amazon.com, we spotted a few winter fronts, including grille inserts and bug-deflector combos. The point of sporting one of these is, first and foremost, to make for quicker engine warm-up in cold times. We spotted this custom front from Fia, which uses a 3M-backed stud for no-drill installation, and there were still a few Lund grille inserts available as we went to press.

Amazon Affiliate links are our attempt to show you real-world pricing and availability for the products we review and install, and while the Amazon links are separate from editorial and advertising, the Four Wheeler Network may receive a commission on purchases made through our posts.

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