How to Drive in the Snow
Must embark on a journey in the snow? Staying safe should be a top priority. Roughly 17% of all vehicle crashes happen in the middle of winter conditions. And around 70% of roads in the U.S. are in snowy regions.
If you need help to figure out how to drive in these difficult circumstances, you are in the right place. Our team at Best Western Transmission has compiled the most practical driving tips that can help you plan accordingly before you set off.
1. Leave Plenty of Time
You won’t get to your destination in the nick of time. Ideally, you should leave about 30 min to 40 min extra time than you normally would. That’s because you will need to de-ice the windscreen, remove the snow on top of the roof, clear the mirrors, lights, and windows.
The inside of the windscreen needs cleaning too. Since you need complete visibility, it is worth spending the time demisting and cleaning the windscreen. Don't forget to check the wipers. Make sure they are switched off before you turn the ignition on. Otherwise, you can blow the wiper control fuse. Besides, the more time you have on your hands, the calmer you will be. That way, you can make rational decisions and react better during risky situations.
2. Use Your Best Judgement and Drive Extra Slow
Many people want to know is it better to drive fast or slow in the snow? The answer is simple – slow works best every single time. Observe the road. If the street isn’t sanded or salted drive super slow. Remember, the odds of skidding and causing an accident are relatively high.
Then, you might ask yourself, "how do I control my car in the snow." Avoid hitting the brakes to force your vehicle to a standstill. Brake lightly and keep the steering wheel as straight as you possibly can. Don't accelerate or turn too quickly. The traction of the tires should steer the vehicle instead. Steer the vehicle in the direction you want to go. Don't accelerate unless you are off an icy patch.
Note: Don’t stop or power up when you drive up a hill. Applying gas makes the wheels spin. What you want is to get some inertia going before you get to that hill. Then let it carry you all to way to the destination. Once you get to the crest, decrease the speed and proceed with caution.
3. Drive At a Safe Distance
When driving on slushy roads or in the snow, you should leave a 10-second gap between you and the vehicle in front of you. This is a key tip when trying to avoid accidents, even when driving 4x4 cars. So, if the vehicle in front doesn't steer well enough, you can reduce your chances of an accident.
Besides, even if you end up damaging the vehicle, our team at Best Western Transmission got you covered. We specialize in the repair and service of the manual transmission, drivelines, and more in domestic and foreign vehicles. That way, you can rest assured your vehicle is in tip-top shape.
4. Stay On the Main Roads If Possible
Main roads are often better cleared than side streets after a snowstorm. If you plan on going somewhere, check the map and opt for roads that are plowed and salted. Another crucial factor is to make sure you are seen by all pedestrians and motorists when driving. Turn the headlights on and steer clear from areas that might put you in a blind spot.
As you can see, there are many ways for you to drive confidently in the snow. But, if you can, it is best to avoid driving in very bad conditions. Check your local weather and if it is terrible, wait for it to pass so that the road maintenance will be complete.
Learn more tips from the professionals at Best Western Transmission on how to best winterize your vehicle.