Winter driving tips
Driving in winter conditions does not have to be a frightening thought if you are properly prepared. Knowing what to expect and how to react is the first step in making it through a snow storm. If you take nothing else away from these winter driving tips, remember this: Stay calm. When driving in snow and ice the worst thing you can do is panic, doing so will only exacerbate an already tense situation and that is when bad things happen.
- Take it slow — Driving too fast for conditions is a sure way to lose control of your vehicle and end up somewhere you shouldn’t be. Make sure you have enough speed to maintain control and to punch through and snow build up that may have accumulated in front of you. Going too fast will make your car slip off the road; conversely, going too slow will get you stuck in the middle of traffic. You must find a happy medium.
- Four-wheel drive does not perform miracles — If you have a pickup truck or SUV with four-wheel drive, that is great. It is a fantastic tool to help you get through deep snow. But remember, four-wheel drive does not negate the laws of physics. If you don’t follow rule No. 1, four-wheel drive will only get your more stuck, much faster.
- Don’t panic — We know we already said this, but it bears repeating. If you should get stuck entering or exiting a driveway or in a snow drift, stay calm and don’t panic. It will be important to resist the urge to slam the vehicle in the lowest gear you have and stomp on the gas. This is almost never the right thing to do. First, try rocking the vehicle back and forth to tamp down some of the snow and to gain a little momentum. Many times this will be enough to get you moving again. If your tires simply will not stop spinning, try putting something dry and gritty under your tires, kitty litter works excellent for this. It is also a good idea to carry kitty litter with you during winter driving.
Also during winter driving months, make sure your tires are properly inflated at all times. Tires can lose air pressure because the cold air make it contract. A good rule of thumb is to check the air pressure in your tires every time you get gas. Tire pressure gauges are incredibly cheap and one should be in your glove box always. Also in a pinch, most gas stations should have one for you to borrow. Your car’s owner’s manual will tell you how much air should be in your tires. Or a Spreen Honda service technician will be glad to help you out.
Before it gets too cold outside, have your vehicle’s battery tested. A weak battery will certainly be exposed and will decide not to work when it is coldest outside. Spreen Honda service technicians have all the equipment needed to check on your battery and will be able to tell you if you are good to go or if you may need a new battery.