Winter Car Safety Tips
Winter is a great time to get out of the house and enjoy the cold weather. Unfortunately, winter can also be dangerous when driving. Be sure to prepare your vehicle for winter travel by using these tips
Check the Weather
It’s important to check the weather before you leave the house. Here are some ways you can do that:
- Check the weather forecast on your phone or computer.
- Get a weather app for your smartphone and/or tablet. There are many free apps out there, as well as many that have a small fee attached.
- Turn on your TV and see what’s happening in your area—you may be able to get more information than just an app or website provides! Don’t forget about local radio stations too—many of them provide updated storm reports throughout the day, so check those out too!
Check Your Battery
Whether you have a car, motorcycle or boat, it’s important to keep your battery in good condition.
- Check the water levels. If your battery has removable caps, check the water level and add distilled water until the fluid is just above halfway up the battery cells. If you can’t see any of the fluid in the battery, don’t add any more than what is necessary to get that 50% mark at eye level—the last thing you want is for too much moisture to build up inside your lead acid battery!
- Conduct a corrosion test on the terminals and connections. This can be done with a flashlight and a cloth rag or paper towel: shine light on the terminal connections and look for any signs of rust or corrosion; if you see any discoloration at all then it’s time to clean those connections out before they cause damage further down into your vehicle’s electrical system!
Equip Your Vehicle with Snow Tires
Snow tires are designed to provide superior traction on snowy, icy, and slushy roads. They have a tread pattern that is optimized for driving in these conditions, which is different from regular (or summer) tires. Snow tires often look quite different than summer tires: they may have deeper treads, or be made of a softer rubber compound.
Snow tire tread patterns vary widely across manufacturers and models; however there are some common features among snow tires that you can look for when purchasing your winter vehicle’s new set of four. If the tire has large grooves or blocks of ice-breaking wire like those pictured above, it’s probably a good candidate for snow use in addition to dry roads during the rest of the year (if possible).
Studded Tires vs Snow Tires: What’s The Difference?
A studded tire has rows of sharp metal studs embedded into its tread pattern—these will tear through ice and create traction where other types would slide around uselessly. While this sounds like an ideal solution for winter driving problems—and indeed it might be under certain circumstances—there are some disadvantages: these metal spikes can damage road surfaces (especially asphalt ones) so they’re not allowed everywhere in North America; they also cause significant wear on other vehicles passing by due to their sharp points scraping against them as well as any steel bodywork present such as bumpers or fenders!
Prepare an Emergency Kit
- Winter is a time when we should be prepared to face any emergency that may arise. Your winter car kit should include items that will help you survive in case you get stranded or are involved in an accident. The best way to prepare for this is by creating a winter car kit ahead of time, so you won’t have to scramble around when someone gets hurt or the weather turns bad.
- Your emergency kit should contain:
- Flashlight with extra batteries (and bulbs)
- First aid kit with scissors, tweezers and antibacterial ointment
- Gloves (leather work gloves)
- Hand wipes/sanitizer wipes/antibacterial hand soap packets (these two items are great because they can go anywhere)
Keep a Tow Rope in the Trunk
A tow rope is a length of rope with a hook on one end.
A tow rope can be used to pull another vehicle out of a ditch or similar situation, but it’s most useful for being towed from behind by another vehicle in case your car breaks down while driving in snow or ice. You may not have a friend available who has a tow truck and is willing to help you out; if that happens, having a tow rope could save you from being stranded until help arrives.
To use the tow rope:
- Attach one end of the tow rope to your bumper as high as possible (to avoid scraping) with an anchor hitch—a metal clasp that attaches to both vehicles’ hitches and keeps them connected while they’re moving at speed—or through any other attachment point available (such as rear-view mirrors). Be sure that there’s no slack in between vehicles when using this method so that less force is required later on when pulling back into motion again.
- Bring both ends around front under each tire closest where they’ll be able to reach without getting caught up on anything else nearby during operation; tie them down securely so nothing falls off during movement ahead!
If you can’t make it over the hill, back down.
If you can’t make it over the hill, back down.
If you get stuck, call a tow truck. If your car is pushed into a ditch, get out of the vehicle and walk to safety. If you’re stuck in snow, use your car’s weight to push the snow away from under its tires.
Have Extra Supply of Coolant for the Radiator
A radiator is a heat exchanger that uses air or water to cool the engine. You should have extra supply of coolant for your radiator because it is important for preventing damage to your vehicle’s engine. Coolant is a mixture of ethylene glycol, water and other chemicals that help to keep your car’s engine from overheating. If you do not have any extra supply of coolant, you may end up with an overheated engine, which can cause serious damage to your car and result in expensive repairs.
Drive According to Conditions
You should also drive according to conditions. This includes reducing your speed and increasing your distance between vehicles, avoiding sudden or sharp braking, hard acceleration, sudden lane changes and driving on ice.
It’s also important to keep your coolant levels up by regularly checking the engine coolant level in your car.
Be prepared for winter driving so that you are ready for anything.
The best thing you can do to prepare for winter driving is to be prepared for anything. Having a well-stocked emergency kit, snow tires, an extra coolant and tow rope in your car will help ensure that you can handle whatever comes your way.
If you are worried about getting stuck in the snow or having a flat, consider purchasing some jumper cables or spare batteries for your cellphone so that other drivers can call for assistance if needed. You should also have shovels and blankets in case of an emergency situation where someone needs warmth but is unable to get out of their car because they cannot move it themselves.
It’s always important to slow down when driving during inclement weather conditions so as not to cause any accidents which could lead people being injured or killed by reckless behavior behind the wheel such as tailgating other vehicles without leaving enough distance between them before braking suddenly!
No matter how careful you are, winter driving can be dangerous. But if you follow these tips and prepare yourself before hitting the roads, it can help reduce the risk of an accident.