Monday, November 11, 2013

Winter Driving Tips

The following post is a guest post by Claire Atkinson, about tips and techniques for driving in the winter and snow. Use these tips to stay safe this winter, and remember to visit Betten Imports for all your transportation needs.

Is your car ready for the cold winter months ahead? Frigid winter weather can be hard on your vehicle, and you will want to be certain that it has been adequately prepared for ice and snow. Listed below are some tips on how to get your car ready for winter weather and how you can be ready for winter driving.
1. Have your vehicle checked out by a qualified mechanic
Before cold weather really sets in, have your car checked out by a good mechanic who will know just what to do to ensure that your vehicle is ready for winter driving. Have him check your tires for proper pressure and tread, your heater, filters, defroster, transmission, battery, spark plugs, hoses, fluids, brakes, lights, and wiper blades. Make sure that your oil has been changed as well. Your mechanic should also check your exhaust system for any possible leaks.
2. Consider snow tires
If you live in a very cold climate where icy roads are a part of winter driving, you may want to invest in snow tires for added traction. You might also want to refresh yourself on how to handle your vehicle if it goes into a skid in icy road conditions.
3. Drive slowly
Even if you have driven in snowy weather countless times before and feel you are an expert, you still need to remember to drive slowly when roads are slick. Never make any abrupt moves in your vehicle, which can cause you to lose control more easily. Also, accelerate slowly and brake slowly. You will want to make your turns more slowly as well.
4. Have an emergency kit in your trunk
You want to be prepared for anything in snowy weather. This means you should always have emergency supplies with you in the trunk of your car. An emergency kit should include a spare tire and tools needed to change a tire, flares, an extra blanket, gloves, warm hat, tool kit, flashlight and extra batteries, shovel, ice scraper, nonperishable food, bottled water, sand or cat litter, jumper cables, and a first aid kit. You might also want to include extra windshield wiper blades and windshield washing fluid.
5. Keep gas tank full
During the winter months, you should keep your gas tank full. If you ever get stranded on a lonely road, you want to be certain that you have enough gas to keep your car running and warm until help arrives. To make certain that you can get help, also keep your cell phone handy and completely charged at all times.
6. Check road conditions ahead of time
If you will need to do some traveling during the winter months, check beforehand what the road conditions will be as well as the weather, and allow for extra time to get safely to your destination.
Common sense and keeping your head while driving, along with properly maintaining your car for the cold months ahead, will help you to get through winter much more smoothly and peacefully.

Claire Atkinson writes for Kanetix, an auto insurance comparison website. In her spare time she enjoys hiking and spending time with her family.

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