Warning Winter Ahead
Safe driving this winter
With winter upon us, a few tips towards safe driving and car maintenance always come in handy to ensure you’re fully prepared for the months ahead.
Your pre-winter checklist
- Check your tyre tread – less than 1.6mm is illegal and won’t give you enough traction in icy conditions.
- Fill your washers with a quality screen wash to avoid freezing, taking care to read the instructions on the bottle.
- Check your oil and water – take any steps you can to pre-empt a breakdown.
- Stock your car with a few winter driving essentials. You’ll need: De-icer, ice scraper, blanket, torch, coat and gloves, boots, shovel and RAC Assistance card.
- Make sure you have breakdown cover – for information on the Club’s breakdown cover Arrival from RAC
Don’t leave home without it
- Take a fully charged phone, a flask of hot drink, food and water.
- Let people know where you’re going and when you’ll get there.
- Don’t clear windows with boiled water.
- Use a scraper or de-icer spray.
- Don’t be impatient. Clear your windscreen, lights and mirrors of snow and wait for them to de-mist before you set off.
- Check you’ve enough fuel for the journey.
- Don’t switch on your wipers as it may cause the fuse to blow. Carefully dislodge them with warm water or de-icer spray.
- Remember – if the forecast or conditions are severe, only drive if the journey is absolutely necessary.
Driving in ice and snow
- Leave twice as much space as you normally would between you and the car in front.
- Avoid skidding by pumping your brakes when slowing down and accelerate gently when speeding up.
- When ABS is activated, it will produce a pulsing sensation through the brake pedal, accompanied by a slight buzzing. The ABS light will not illuminate. Don’t worry, this is completely normal.
- Keep an eye out for pedestrians – they can be very unpredictable in icy conditions!
- When pulling away use a higher gear than normal and use dipped headlights.
Be careful, think ahead and drive safely out there this winter.