5 winter driving habits you should avoid
We’re officially in the heart of winter, meaning drivers will have to be extra cautious behind the wheel. No matter how confident of a driver you are, you likely experience at least some level of anxiety in the winter. And while there’s no way of eliminating the worry completely, there are steps you can take to ensure you’re more comfortable behind the wheel during the cold months.
Here are five driving habits you should avoid:
Slamming on the brakes
Whether it’s snowing outside or the roads are icy, it’s always in your best interest to slow down and take it easy.
Driving at a faster speed means that everything will take longer when compensating if lose control of your vehicle. Note: If you do happen to slip, make sure to stay calm and steer in the direction the rear of your car is sliding.
Slamming on the brakes is never a good idea, but it’s particularly bad in the dead of winter.
Using summer tires or all-season tires
You’ve likely heard this a number of times before, but driving with all-season or summer tires during the winter is simply unsafe. While you may have the urge to save a buck or two – especially after the Holiday season – your safety is not an area where you want to cut corners.
At the end of the day, summer and even all-season tires are simply not suitable for the winter conditions, especially given the weather we’ve experienced over the past few weeks.
Driving with snow on your roof
It may be considered one of the bigger annoyances and driving hazards when it comes to winter driving, but it’s important that you take the time to properly clear the snow off your car every morning.
Driving with snow on your roof can be a hazard to other drivers, as well as pedestrians. If you noticed that you’re typically in a hurry in the morning, get up five minutes earlier to ensure you have enough time to clean the snow/ice off your car.
Pouring hot water on a frozen windshield
If you think that pouring hot water on a frozen windshield is a smart way to speed up the de-icing process, you’d be wrong. The temperature difference between the hot water and the icy windshield could be big enough that it actually cracks.
Stick with an ice scraper. It may require a little more elbow grease, but at least it won’t cost you a new windshield.
Not only is it important that you slow down when the roads are poor, but it’s also crucial that you keep a safe distance between you and the other drivers. Tailgating the car ahead of you is extremely dangerous, especially when it’s snowy outside. In general, you should be a full two seconds behind the car in front you.