Skip to Content
Home » Blog » Driving on Winter Roads- Safe Driving Tips

Driving on Winter Roads- Safe Driving Tips

Love it? Pls Share it!

Winter presents some of the most dangerous driving conditions. With sleet, snow, ice, freezing fog, rain and even the shorter daylight hours, drivers need to be extra cautious.  To help ease the stress of driving on winter roads, here are some winter driving tips to follow to ensure you remain safe.

driving on winter roads

When Driving on Icy or Snowy Roads
Keep in mind that overpasses, bridges and less-traveled roads will freeze over first so be especially careful when traveling on these surfaces.
Using low gears will help with traction on snowy roads.
Avoid using cruise control or overdrive so that you are always in full control of your car.
Slow down and leave plenty of distance between you and the car ahead of you.
Brake gently, do not hit the brakes hard.
Use your headlights.
Keep your windshield and headlights free of snow and ice.
Make sure you have the proper tires, and/or chains on your car.

What to Do If You Skid

If you’ve ever experienced skidding on wet , snowy or icy roads, then you know it can happen in a split second. While your first reaction will be to hit the brakes. Do not do that. Instead, what you need to do will depend on whether it is your front wheels or rear wheels skidding.

If The Rear Wheels Skid:

Do not hit the brakes. Instead, take your foot off of the accelerator and steer in the direction you want your front wheels to go. For example, if your rear wheels are sliding to the left, you want to steer left. If they are sliding to the right, steer right. 

If you have standard breaks just pump them gently.

If you have anti-lock (ABS) brakes, apply steady pressure. Do not pump them. You will feel the breaks begin to pulse or shake under your foot, that’s okay, that is what they are supposed to do. 

If your rear wheels begin to sliding the other way as you start to recover, gently ease the steering wheel toward that side. You may have to steer left and right a few times before you can get your vehicle back under complete control.

If The Front Wheels Skid:

If your front wheels skid, quickly remove your foot from the gas and shift the car into neutral. Don’t try to steer right off because as the wheels skid sideways, they’ll slow your car down and traction will return. As it does, steer in the direction you want to go, then put the transmission back into ‘drive’ or release the clutch, and accelerate gently.

4 Things to Try If You get Stuck

Getting stuck in snow can be beyond frustrating, but what you do next may determine whether or not you’ll be able to get out on your own. Here are a few things to try before calling for help.

1.Do not keep giving your car gas and spinning your wheels as this will only get you stuck even deeper. Instead, try turning the wheels from side to side a few times in order to push the snow out of the way. Then give the car just a bit of gas to try to ease it out.

2.Use a shovel or stick or something else to try to clear the snow away from the wheels and the underside of the car.

3.Try pouring sand, cat litter, salt, or gravel in the path of the wheels in order to help gain traction.

4. Before trying this last tip, check your owner’s manual first as it could possibly damage the transmission on some vehicles. Try rocking your vehicle by shifting from forward to reverse, and then back again. Each time the car is in gear, give a light touch on the gas until the vehicle gets going. 

Final Thoughts

The smartest thing to do on a winter weather day is to avoid driving. Of course, many of us don’t have that choice, so before you leave, there are a few things you should do. First, check your local driving conditions so you are aware of trouble spots, closed roads and any accidents. If it’s at all possible, wait until the roads have been plowed. Always plan to leave a few minutes earlier than usual, so you have plenty of time to get to your destination. Buckle up, drive slowly and carefully. Before hitting the Indiana roads this winter, bring your car into York Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram to make sure your car is ready for winter driving. 

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.