What to Bring in Your Car for Winter Travel
When winter weather hits, it's important to be prepared. If you're planning on hitting the road, here are some things you should make sure to bring with you:
Winter Car Travel Essentials
There are some things that you should always have in your car when travelling in winter. These include:
A bag of sand or salt
A first-aid kit
A fire extinguisher
It's also a good idea to have a plan for where you're going to stay if you get stranded. A good rule of thumb is to bring enough supplies for 24 hours, just in case.
Must-Haves for Your Winter Car Kit
In addition to the essentials, there are a few other things you should consider bringing with you in your winter car kit. These include:
A bag of kitty litter or sand (for traction if you get stuck)
A tow rope or chain
A flares or reflective triangles
A cell phone charger
Extra food and water
Extra clothes and shoes
Some other things to keep in mind are to make sure your gas tank is full before embarking on a winter road trip, as well as to keep an eye on the weather forecast. It's also a good idea to let someone know your route and expected arrival time.
Winter Driving Tips
If you're driving in winter weather, there are a few things you should keep in mind:
Accelerate and decelerate slowly to avoid losing traction.
Increase your following distance to give yourself more time to stop.
Brake gently to avoid skidding. If your wheels start to lock up, ease off the brake.
Turn on your lights to improve your visibility, and make sure your taillights are clean.
Keep your gas tank at least half full to avoid running out of fuel in case you get stranded.
Don't use cruise control on slippery roads.
Be careful when driving over bridges and overpasses, as they tend to freeze before other roads do.
If you do find yourself skidding, turn your wheel in the direction you want the front of the car to go. Steer gently to avoid overcorrecting. If you have anti-lock brakes, apply them firmly and evenly. If you don't have anti-lock brakes, pump your brakes gently to avoid skidding.
How to Prepare Your Car for Winter Travel
Before you hit the road this winter, make sure your car is in good shape. Here are a few things to do:
Check your battery and make sure it's properly charged.
Inspect your tires and make sure they have enough tread and are properly inflated.
Check your wiper blades and replace them if they're worn out.
Check your brakes and make sure they're in good condition.
Check your antifreeze level and add more if necessary.
Check your oil level and make sure it's clean.
It's also a good idea to have an emergency kit in your car. This should include things like a first-aid kit, a flashlight, a blanket, and snacks.
If you're planning on doing a lot of driving in winter weather, it's a good idea to have your car serviced by a mechanic. They can check for any potential problems and make sure your car is ready for winter travel.
Winter Car Care Tips
Once you've arrived at your destination, there are a few things you can do to keep your car running smoothly in winter:
Park in a garage or under a carport if possible to protect your car from snow and ice.
Wash your car regularly to remove salt and other road debris.
Check your tires regularly and rotate them every 5,000 miles.
Have your car serviced regularly to keep it in good condition.
In addition, it's a good idea to keep a winter emergency kit in your car. This should include items like a shovel, ice scraper, jumper cables, and a first-aid kit. If you do get stranded, stay with your car and call for help.
By following these tips, you can help ensure that your car is ready to take on winter weather.