Winter driving is something that few people look forward to. Ice, snow, rain and sub-zero temperatures are a hazardous combination, and the winter weather can also cause annoyances such as flat batteries and iced-up windows. This blog outlines our top five winter tips for safe and comfortable winter driving.
Look After Your Car Battery
The cold weather puts extra strain on your car battery, especially as you are more likely to be using your lights, heater and wipers. Remember to turn off any electrical loads before switching the engine off, and make sure everything is off before trying to start the engine again. This places less strain on the battery, as it does not have to immediately power unnecessary things when you first switch it on.
Make Sure You Can See Clearly
It is absolutely essential to ensure that you can see your surroundings clearly when you are driving. You could receive a fine if you are caught driving with dirt or snow on your windows, lights or number plate. Remember to allow time to de-ice your car before you set off in the morning – keeping some de-icer and a scraper in the car will save you having to search for it in a hurry.
Keep a microfibre cloth in your car so you can de-mist the windows again if required. Remember to clear any snow from the roof of your car. Many drivers forget to do this and it can be very dangerous as the snow can fall onto your windscreen whilst you are driving and block your view.
Make Sure Other Road Users Can See You
It is equally important to ensure that other road users can see your vehicle clearly. Winter is more likely to bring reduced visibility on the roads due to darker evenings, reduced sunlight, heavy cloud and rain. Make sure that all of your lights are working properly and are not obstructed by snow or dirt.
Remember to use sidelights, headlights or fog lights as and when appropriate – you must only use fog lights when visibility is severely reduced so as not to dazzle other drivers or obstruct your brake lights.
Check Your Tyres
It is recommended that your tyres have a tread depth of at least 3mm for the winter weather, and you may even want to consider switching to all-season or winter tyres. At our Hook Tyre Centre, we can advise you on which tyres would be best-suited to your requirements. Do not let air out of your tyres in an attempt to improve grip – this is very unsafe and it does not work.
Prepare for the Unexpected
Getting stuck in traffic or breaking down during cold weather carries its own set of hazards – it is not uncommon for drivers to become stranded for hours due to sudden heavy snow or major accidents. To ensure that you are prepared for these situations, make sure you have an emergency breakdown kit in your car. This should include a warm blanket, a fully-charged mobile phone with an in-car charger or power pack, a first aid kit, a road atlas or sat-nav, your breakdown membership card, an ice-scraper and de-icer, a torch, snacks and bottled water. These items will help you if you ever break down or are stuck in very heavy traffic during the winter.
Book a BOSCH Vehicle Service with Hook XPress
Why not book your vehicle in for a BOSCH vehicle service before the winter weather sets in? We offer three different BOSCH service plans, starting from just £99. Contact us today to enquire or book your vehicle service using our booking system.
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