Christmas is almost here and many of us dream of the perfect white Christmas. However, if it does happen, how are you going to drive in those icy, snowy conditions?
Many things can happen when driving in such treacherous conditions and your success can all depend upon the car you are driving. 4X4 vehicles with special traction control designed for such conditions can cope, but not necessarily easily. Smaller hatchbacks and city cars are perilous to drive under these conditions.
So should you drive on ice and snow?
No. With genuine thought for your safety, you should avoid driving in snow and ice no matter what vehicle you own. It is safer for you and for other people on the road. Snow and ice is unpredictable and any movement could send you into a slide.
If you need to go shopping and anything similar, it is best to do it online rather than make the journey yourself.
However, if you need to drive, then we have a few handy tips for you.
When the snowflakes flutter down and the puddles freeze over, it may be time to consider purchasing winter tyres. These tyres are designed specifically to ensure you maintain grip in the ice and reduces the chances of sliding.
If you choose not to purchase winter tyres, then make sure your tyres are pumped up correctly and that you have at least 3mm of tread left. This means your tyres have the best chances to cope with the slippy roads.
Give yourself more time
When it snows, you need to drive slower. This will reduce the risk of sliding and accidents and give you more time to assess hazards. This will also add additional time onto your journey. We advise that you give yourself more time when travelling either to work or to visit friends and family Whilst work isn’t worth an accident or your life, we understand that it feels necessary to still go in. Do not rush and take your time.
Visibility is crucial
Obviously, when driving in general, visibility is important, so when the snow is falling, it becomes absolutely essential. Your windscreen wipers need to work effectively. First, check the blades are in good condition, because it is no good if they smear your windscreen rather than clear it.
Second, make sure they are switched off before you start your car. If they are frozen in place and you turn the ignition on, it may blow the fuse and you will have useless windscreen wipers.
Screenwash is also essential (boy, do I have a story or two). Find yourself a good quality screenwash that protects itself down to -35 degrees. This will prevent it from freezing.
There may be times when your windscreen is covered in muck and dirt in winter and you need your screenwash and if it has frozen, you will do more damage to your car as well as reduce your visibility. Top tip: Make sure your screenwash can be used throughout the winter period.
When it comes to driving in snow, there is a risk of standstill traffic and long delays. There is also a risk of being trapped for long periods of time, possibly overnight. It is important to be prepared. You do this by dressing warmly and having a spare bag of clothes with food and a hot flask in as a precaution. Make sure your car also has a blanket in it as well in case you are forced to sleep in your car overnight. This may sound like an extreme response, but it is best to be prepared.
For those of you with prestige cars, snow and ice can be particularly treacherous dependent upon your model of car. If you damage your car or simply wish to have it services, Hippo Service Centre can offer you the best prestige car servicing in the North West of England. Our state of the art service centre based in Blackburn offers the best car servicing in Lancashire and we can also provide a free winter health check.