Winter Driving Advice

Never underestimate the dangers of driving in winter – snow, ice and water can all be hazardous and cold conditions can affect your vehicle. Stay safe on the road by following our simple tips!

Check Your Tyres

If you haven’t already, now is the time to make the switch to winter tyres! While not a legal requirement in the UK, winter tyres are specially designed to stay supple when temperatures drop to ensure that you retain grip on difficult winter surfaces.

If you choose not to fit winter tyres to your vehicle, you should still ensure that the tyres you are relying on are up to standard! Make sure that they are filled to their recommended pressures and you have at least 3mm of tyre tread.

Prepare Your Battery

Failing car batteries are the biggest cause of winter breakdowns, so make sure that yours won’t let you down before it is too late! If you know that your battery is near three years of age you should get it checked! Book a Free Battery Check at your local Setyres branch and let our specialists make sure that it is in good condition.

Top Up Your Engine Fluids

It is also advisable to check that your engine fluid levels are all at sufficient levels before winter hits. Look under your bonnet and make sure that your engine oil and coolant levels have not dropped below the minimum marking line. You can top these up by following your vehicle manufacturer handbook yourself or book a Car Service at Setyres.

During winter, snow and rain can affect your view of the road so you must also check your windscreen wipers are working effectively and your screen wash is sufficiently topped up. If you need to fill your screen wash add the correct mixture of antifreeze, as recommended in your vehicle handbook, as water alone is at risk of freezing.

Check Ahead

Before setting off on any journeys in winter, you should check the weather forecast and travel updates to ensure that it is safe to drive and your route will be clear. If snow or freezing temperatures are predicted, you may want to reconsider driving.

Be sure to allow for extra time for any journeys and never rush to make up time when there is snow and ice around! You will need to prepare your vehicle before driving by removing any ice, snow or condensation from your mirrors and windows – take a look at our helpful advice on demisting your windscreen.

Driving in Snow & Ice

When driving in snowy conditions it is a good idea to prepare yourself by packing a shovel, blanket and ice scraper in your car.

We would advise against driving in snow and ice so before you set off you should assess the importance of your journey.

If you do decide to drive, you should do so slowly and carefully. Try to plan your journey sticking to main roads as smaller lanes are less likely to have been gritted and may be more hazardous.

Make sure that you keep your distance away from the car in front of you as it can take ten times longer to come to stop on an icy road!

You should adjust your driving style and ensure that all braking, accelerating and steering is as gentle as possible to help your tyres maintain as much grip as possible with the surface of the road.

If you do skid, resist the temptation to put your brakes on and take your foot off the accelerator slowly. Wait for your tyres to regain traction with the road and gently steer in the direction of travel. Do not make sudden or harsh manoeuvres as this can cause the wheels to lock and worsen the skid.

Posted on: 01/12/2017

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