If you’re been driving for a while, a lot of this will be second nature, but we bet many were caught out with this week’s cold spell and were hunting round the house for the scraper and de icer!
Most of our tips are just common sense, but here’s a welcome reminder to keep you confident journeying from A to B this winter.
Ice and snow are nothing to be feared when driving, but planning ahead can go a long way to ensure you’re not caught out in the cold.
Plan your route.
If you’re heading out on even the shortest of trips it's worth keeping an eye on the news for the latest traffic information. Choose a route that keeps you on major main roads as these are more likely to be cleared and gritted, if you get an unexpected snowfall.
Ensure you’ve got your scraper and de-icer in your vehicle ready - you’re just as likely to have to de-ice on the way home as you are in the morning. Most people will de-ice their windscreens and windows before they set off, but it’s just as important to ensure your headlights and taillights are free of frost. Make sure you can see and be seen.
Keep your fuel topped up.
It’s good to have at least a quarter of a tank of fuel or a fully charged battery on your electric vehicle for peace of mind and to cover any unexpected delays.
Carry a breakdown kit.
Be prepared for every occasion with a torch, food, blanket, shovel, high visibility jacket or lanyard and first aid kit in your boot.
Take care of yourself.
Cold’s can really reduce your ability to concentrate and react to what's going on around you.
When you’re on the roads…
Keep your distance.
Stopping distances are increased with winter weather so give yourself the time to slow down by keeping well back from other road users.
Drive in high gears in snow and ice.
If you can, set off in 2nd gear and try to stay at a constant speed in the higher gears. Use your gears rather than your brake to slow down. If you have to brake, do so as gently as possible.
Be aware of black ice
Easier to spot in the daytime as it reflects the sunlight, but a different prospect at night. If the temperature is 0C or colder it's likely that there will be some on your journey. Turn your music off and listen to the sound of the wheels, if they are making no noise it's likely you are driving on ice.
How to recover…
If you start to skid
When driving on ice, if your car begins to skid steer into the skid (if the car begins to skid to the left, steer to the left) If this doesn't work, straighten your wheels as this can help them regain traction.
If you get stuck.
Try to straighten the steering wheel and clear snow from the wheels. If you have an old blanket or rug, putting this in front of the driving wheels could give the tyres better grip to set off on.
Stay safe and book a winter service with our Pye mechanics. They will look over your vehicle, check your tyres, anti freeze and fluid levels to ensure your car is in the best condition it can be for the season ahead. Contact the servicing team at your chosen Pye Motors dealership.