Driving in the Snow – Winter is cold and so does the road. When the road starts to freeze or the snow is piling up, driving on it would be very difficult. It is common sense that having a trip or driving under this condition is very dangerous. Many experts told that it is dangerous and can lead to any kind of accident. Especially if you can’t get a hold of your car. So, in case you have to go, then here are the tips on how to drive safely in the snow you should know beforehand.
Here Are 10 Tips You Probably Have To Consider Before Driving Under The Snowfall
1.Be Prepared – Stay Connected And Use Winter Tires
Before you go on the trip, it is better to check your car’s condition. You can either go to the AAA approved Auto repair for the checkup, or you can do it by yourself. Is it necessary? Yes, it is. Don’t ever underestimate the need for 100% machine or car condition. It can help you lessen the burden, prepare for any kind of condition, and avoid skidding. So, what you should check? In this case, you should consider checking all of the equipment and the tire.
Headlight, taillight, wiper, heater, and winter tire are some of those you should check beforehand. A Winter tire or snow tire is a must. This is not only about the driving tips but also the survival tips. This particular tire has a softer compound, make it easier to grip the roads and snowy surface. At the same time, the material is made to withstand the harsh cold temperature. This is not a normal tire, so you might have to buy it beforehand.
The tire has distinctive tiny grooves that perfectly match with the sludge, ice, and snow. It can disperse water faster and provide better breaking plus traction. If you are going for the road with heavy snow, then the best how to drive safely in the snow tip will be using tires with deeper tread grooves. Headlight and taillight are also very important to help you give better visibilities when it is snowing. At the same time, make sure the heater work as it best.
2.Checking The Weather
There is no reason to expose yourself to such a dangerous situation. Check the weather before and along your route. If possible, you better stay at home. Delaying your trip when the weather is bad is one way to save your life. It is also advised that you should make sure that the temperature is bearable. When both the weather and the temperature are okay, you may continue your journey. And make sure you tell your family or others about your trip.
3.Understand The Flashing Light Of Stability Control System
Granted if you got a more modern car for your trip. In the current days, many features will enhance safety and driving assistance. One of the greatest inventions that can help you save your life for driving in the snow is the stability-control system. Not all of the vehicles come with this kit, but if you do, then use it as it supposed to be. How did this system work? It is simply showing you some small amber flashing light that tells you something is wrong.
Doesn’t believe it? the thing is, this light is the depiction that your car is slipping. In whatever condition or speed you are, when you see the light, then ease up and slow down your car. With this idea, the tires will regain their grip. And eventually back with its traction. So, the next how to drive safely in the snow tip is noticing the alert. In all cases, you should not hit the break very suddenly. It would be better to slow down rather than braking.
4.Drive Calm And Smoothly
Just like driving under the rain, losing traction is very common and can lead to skidding. When it happens you will have a very small control to your car. This particular problem tends to happen when you are speeding or accelerating. So how to counter this condition? The answer will be driving slow, calm, and smoothly. Driving smoothly refer to not braking quite often and move slowly but with constant speed. So, you can maintain the tire traction.
At the same time, you should avoid any kind of fancy movement. The key of save driving is being smooth with your steering wheel, brakes, and accelerator. So, No jerky movement or a sudden brake. It will save you from the possibility of losing traction and skidding. When you are going to turn, slow down the car, push the brake slightly, and maneuver the car as smoothly as possible. At least the move will help you fight the slippery road and avoid skidding.
5.Look Far Ahead – Think Ahead
When you find that the road is slippery, then expect what you have in the front. Awareness is very important. Think and anticipate whatever you will encounter in the front. If you have to turn, then slowing down your car way before the turn comes is how to drive safely in the snow key. According to the expert, you should allow double stopping distance when you got the wet road, triple it when you drive on the snow, and more when driving on the icy road.
6.Look Where You Want To Go
Regardless of how good your driving skill is, you better expect to have skidding when driving in the snowy road. The thing is, this problem will most likely happen even for the professional driver. So, what you should do when your car skid? The answer will be don’t panic and hit the brakes. You should always look at where you want to go not where the car is heading. Slow down and focus to get back to your track.
7.Don’t Panic Don’t Hit The Brakes
After you make sure where you want to go, now it is the right time to deal with the skids. As you hit the slick spot and start to panic, think calmly to avoid any unneeded movement. The first thing to do is don’t get panic. At the same time, don’t ever think about hitting the brakes. That is the worst thing you do to avoid any skid or slip. Two possible cases might happen under this condition, front-wheel skid, and the rear wheel skid.
If you got the front wheel skid, then the best solution is to ease the gas and slowing down your vehicle. To counter the rear skid, you should turn the steering wheel in the same direction as the rear wheel is. For an example of how to drive safely in the snow, if your rear is swinging to the right, then turn the wheel to the right as well. Slow down and don’t ever think about hitting the brakes. All in all, make sure your wheel pointed in the right direction.
8.Constantly Assess Your Traction
For driving in the snowy road, you can access the traction quite easily. Since traction refers to how slippery or grippy the road is, this idea is quite advised. Worth noting that, you might have to do this trip with the help of an Anti-Lock-Brake System (ABS). To do this, you can apply the brakes gently for a very quick second or two while driving straight. However, make sure that there are no other vehicles or cars nearby.
If you can slow down at a reasonable rate without using the ABS, then you got a great grip and better traction. On the other hand, when you feel the minimal deceleration even though you have max the brake plus the ABS is activated, then you got a slippery road. The ABS will be very helpful if you are skidding and unable to recover. You can push the brake pedal down and don’t let up, the computer will do anything to gain back the traction.
9.Be Aware For The All-Wheel Drive Traction (Better Avoid This Mode)
All-wheel drive is cool, indeed. But be aware that the system may not works as it supposed to be on the snowy road. So, what you should expect and how to drive safely in the snow? There are a lot. This system allows you to gain slip-free acceleration. However, this system also doesn’t do justice for the turning and the stopping movement. You can say that there is no significant difference between this system and the normal vehicles.
To conclude, driving in the winter with snow around, needs better handling of your car. In many cases, this condition will never be ideal for every driver. It has a very high risk of collision, losing traction, skidding, and crash. No one wants that, including you. So, it is better to opt out driving in winter especially with heavy snow. If you do have to go, then make sure you checked out the tips given to avoid and lessen the worst-case scenario of an accident.