As the clocks went back today, mornings get frostier and we dig our winter coats out of the back of our wardrobes, driving conditions can get more dangerous and unpredictable.
With 55% of car-owning Brits not knowing how to use their brakes in wet, icy or snowy weather, Euro Car Parts has some essential preparation tips before you take to the roads.
- Remove snow and ice
Before you set off, clear your vehicle of any snow and ice as much as possible. Not only does this allow you to see where you’re going, it also means snow won’t fall off while you’re driving and hit another driver or cyclist.
- Check your car’s vitals
It’s important to check everything is working or topped up when the temperature drops, to avoid getting caught short in poor conditions. Make sure you have enough petrol, that your windscreen washer fluid is topped up and that all the jets are working. To stop your washer jets from freezing in the ice and snow, fill your windscreen washer reservoir with concentrated washer fluid (making sure it contains antifreeze).
- Use your car lights correctly
When driving in the snow, ensure you have your car lights on correctly – dipped beams in heavy snow and additional fog lights if the snow is falling thickly – to help you see and be seen by other drivers.
- Stock up on supplies
If you have to travel in snowy conditions, stock up your car with extra supplies in case you break down or get stuck for long periods of time. The most important thing is to have an extra set of warm clothing such as a winter jacket, gloves and a blanket. Other useful supplies include:
- a first aid kit
- jump cables
- phone charger
- torch and spare batteries
- basic tool kit
- reflective triangle and hi-visibility jacket
- Keep a sample of carpet on hand
If your car gets stuck, an old piece of carpet placed under the tyres can give you enough traction to get free. If you don’t have some old carpet, you can use your car mats instead for a quick fix!
Martin Gray from Euro Car Parts said: “Although British roads are generally only hazardous for a short part of the year, it’s good to take a moment to refresh your knowledge on what to do in difficult weather.
“Bad weather can mean more cars are on the road, and we’re often running later than usual which can lead to careless driving. It’s important to take the extra time preparing your vehicle and keeping your distance from others to avoid any accidents and stay safe this winter.”