With winter well upon us, it is time to think about the extra care needed in both driving situations, and car maintenance and preparation, you might as well consider visiting an automotive repairs centre. With rain, wind, hail and possibly even snow on our roads, we can expect them to be very slippery, meaning that we need to not only be more cautious, but allow for other road users to do the unexpected.
Braking distances will increase dramatically on wet roads, but if there is ice or snow, and your car is not prepared for it, the ability to actually stop, could be nearly unachievable.
Much lighter pedal pressure is needed due to the fact that on these surfaces, once traction between the tyre and road surface is broken, it may be impossible to regain. Add this to poor visibility, and a high chance of encountering storm debris, or escaped pets & livestock, and you can see why we all need to slow down to suit the conditions.
Driving with our lights on will also help other road users to see us, and if we plan our journey, to prevent that last second change of direction, those other drivers won’t be placed in a dangerous situation.
Power outages could also see traffic lights not working, and common sense & patience will see everyone get through these intersections safely. If we come across any road that is flooded, it is imperative that we check the depth and flow of the water before proceeding only if it is absolutely safe to do so.
Remember that if you can’t see the road surface, you cannot be sure if it has not been washed away. Driving through water could also see you car stalling in the middle as water splashes up onto the electronics or into the motor itself. Is risking your family’s life and the lives of those that may be required to rescue you really worth it?
Obviously in these severe conditions, our cars also need to be in top condition and most of us could list the obvious safety items that are critical in the situations that may be faced.
With the tread on our tyres being the thing that actually pumps the water out, so that the tyre can contact the road surface, the need for our tyres to be in great condition is obvious.
For these tyres to give their best, suspension and steering components and set up also need to be well maintained. Brakes need to work well and be able to be applied smoothly without the pulsation that out of round discs and drums create.
Lights and wipers need to be in perfect condition too, as well as the heater and window demisters. Many of us would think that in this weather the air conditioner would not have much of a role, but by having it running, and the temperature selector turned up, you will find that the windows will clear much quicker than without the compressor running.
Window and door seals in good condition will also add to comfort and safety. Even having the exhaust system free of leaks, is more important as we tend to drive with the passenger compartment sealed with windows wound up, more in inclement weather, and if there are any gaps or holes in the body work, exhaust fumes can enter the cabin, resulting in high levels of very dangerous carbon monoxide, adding greatly to fatigue or even worse.
Please be extra cautious on the road as we head through winter, and get your car inspected by a reliable Car Servicing centre, not only for your peace of mind, but for the safety of you, your family and everyone else on the road as well.