3 Important Winter Driving Tips

Based on 2011 data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, once every 14 seconds, an Adult in the United States is treated in an emergency department for Crash Related injuries (see the study here), and this number goes up in the winter, so we’ve decided to write a Winter Driving Tips post to give you a few things you should keep in mind when out on the road this winter.

Winter Driving Tip # 1 – Check Your Tires

Since your tires keep your car on the road, it’s important to check and make sure that they are in good condition. Here are a few ways to check the health of your tires:

    • Check for cracks in the side-wall – if there are cracks, it could mean that the rubber of your tire is nearing the end of its’ life and your tires should be replaced immediately.
      Cracked Tire Sidewall
    • Check the tire pressure (PSI) of your tires – having a tire pressure that’s too high or too low will affect your gas mileage and braking ability. Each tire manufacturer/model has its own recommended Tire Pressure (in PSI) that it is meant to operate at. To find out what recommendation is, access the manufacturer’s website and be sure to check that your tires are the appropriate tire pressure.
    • Check the tire tread – Another measure of your tires’ health is the tire tread. Tire Tread is especially important in the winter, when it tends to rain and snow more. If you’re unsure how to check the life of your tire tread, you can check out this guide to check the remaining tread of your tires to determine your tires’ health.
      How to check the life of your tires
    • Check for nails and screws – Another important thing to check your tires for is nails and screws. If you find foreign objects embedded into your tire, you can take your wheel to a tire store and they will usually fix it for free or a small fee.

Winter Driving Tip #2 – Check the Forecast

Whether it’s a bit of rain, or a full-blown winter blizzard:don’t be cause off-guard when it hits! Be sure to check the forecast every few days to stay ahead of the weather. In addition to checking the forecast, you should plan on driving out early and throw some extra supplies into your car in case you were to ever get stranded due to winter weather.

Here are some supplies that are a good idea to keep in your car:

  • Spare set of warm clothing
  • Warm Blanket
  • Flashlight
  • Road Flares
  • Several Bottles of Water
  • Food / Snacks
  • First Aid Kit
  • Tire Chains
  • Warm Gloves

Winter Driving Tip #3 – Ready Your Car For The Winter

Winter weather requires your car to be readied differently to remain as efficient as possible. Check with your vehicle manufacturer for recommended oil type and antifreeze coolant. Also good to keep in mind is that different road conditions require different tires, so if you have Summer tires on your car, it might be a good idea to switch to Winter Tires, or even All Season tires.

Also good to note is that car batteries might have a harder time cranking a cold engine, so you might want to take a look at Optima High-Output Batteries to replace your car battery if your car is having issues starting.

More Tips:

For more safety tips on Winter Driving, be sure to check out Edmunds.com’s article titled “Driving on Snow and Ice: 10 Safety Tips

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