Winter taking its toll on cars

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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) Eau Claire auto shops are used to being busy during the winter months. But this year, they're getting pounded with calls for help, and their lots are filling up with cars needing service.

Thursday morning, on her way to work, Tim Wagner's wife's car was pummeled.

"I'm glad she's alive, if it was a little over to the left or to the right, and I might not have my Linda," says Wagner, of Eau Claire.

It was a block of ice that flew off a semi, and shattered her windshield.

It's just one example of the damage winter 2014 is bringing to cars.

Inside Trubilt Collision Center in Eau Claire lies the aftermath of rear enders, side swipes, and t-bones, all weather related. Auto body workers are tirelessly trying to keep up with the demand.

"A lot of stress, twelve to fourteen hour days and the guys are working long hours too just trying not to burn them out," says Trubilt owner Jerry Salter.

But the damage of the cold and snow isn't limited to the outside of cars. Brock Rizzo, of Advance Auto, says he's installed hundreds more batteries this year than any other.

And that's not the only problem.

"The ice takes a pretty big toll on the roads, puts big potholes in the road, breaks the tight rod ends, all the shocks, suspension, that's been getting pretty beat up this year," says Rizzo.

A few tips for keeping your car out of the shop: keep the tank full and the engine warm, and drive slow.

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