FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Before getting out in the snow make sure you don’t forget to go through a mental checklist.

Ask yourself if you have checked your tires, scheduled your regular maintenance check-up, or even check to see if there is a pet inside the hood of your car.

If you answered no to those questions or even yes, a local automotive shop has some driving tips for you before you get on the road to do some last-minute Christmas shopping.

“Make sure you’re aware of your surroundings, making sure that you have plenty of stopping distance, making sure you got plenty of time to get there don’t be in a rush,” Will Helton said.

Will Helton is the owner of The University Auto and Tire and says people often forget to take care of the little things when it comes to their vehicles.

“When you have days like today, your tires are super important, and usually when the weather’s great you’re not thinking about it,” Helton said.

Helton says when it comes to snow and ice, tires are the first line of defense on a car.

“Tires are the only thing in your car that actually touches the ground so no matter what car you drive, that’s what touches the ground,” Helton said.

Cameron Selby a mechanic at the University Auto and Tire says failing to do these things can result in further damage to your vehicle or even cause damage to yourself.

“More likely to hydroplane, lose traction over time and with the age of the vehicle there is potential for the tire to start to come apart just because it starts to deteriorate,” Selby said.

Helton says their number priority is to keep everyone during this winter storm safe. One trick Helton says is to grab a penny and if you see the top of Abraham Lincoln’s head if you do that means your tread is too low and it’s time for some new tires.