You may already know that you need to drive slow on roads covered with ice or snow. But you should also know how to brake properly. The following guide will help you use your brakes as you drive on snowy or icy roads.
Regular Braking & Maintenance
Driving your car during the winter season follows the same traffic rules, so it makes sense that you have to brake from time to time. The best way to brake while driving on ice is to use the pump method. This simply means that you have to slowly press on your brakes, and let them go. You must repeat these steps until your car slows down to your desired speed.
You should remember to have your brakes serviced before the winter hits to make sure they are in tip-top condition. Snowy or icy roads are definite good reasons to keep your brake system in good condition. Make sure you consider purchasing all-terrain or snow tires (snow tires are better for the winter and are suited to handle extreme cold temperatures). And these tires will also help your brakes because they have better traction than normal tires.
Dealing With A Slide
Sliding on ice or snowy roads is not uncommon, especially if you are driving at higher speeds. You need to be prepared for the possibility of a slide or fishtailing. The following is a simple guide that will help you correct this dangerous situation:
- The first thing you must do is let go of your brakes no matter how much you want to press on them. Pressing on your brakes may only add force to the slide or cause you to spin out.
- Keep both hands firmly on your wheel, and do not turn away from the slide. What you want to do is turn your car into the slide to help control your vehicle. Be careful not to over-steer, as this may also cause you to spin out.
- Start to pump your brakes to slow down if you are able to regain control of your car.
- Do your best to find a pile of snow to crash your vehicle into should you be unable to gain control of your car. The snow should help reduce the impact and may lessen the damage.
Remember that the aforementioned steps do rely on your brakes, so it is imperative that you have your brake system checked before winter hits your area. But, as you can see, you can prepare for winter and know how to deal with the common problem of icy or snowy roads.
For professional auto maintenance, contact a company such as Elkhart Auto Center.