Tips for Safe Winter Driving

Driving in the rain, snow, and icy conditions can be dangerous at times. In order to keep safe on the road, it is necessary to slightly adjust our driving habits for this time of year. During rain or snow, our vehicles are more vulnerable and less easy to control in certain situations. The following tips will come in handy when it comes to safe driving during the winter months. 
Drive slower 
 Driving in the rain or snow is simply just more dangerous than dry conditions. Slightly lower your driving speed will allow you to have plenty of time to brake and prevent your tires from losing traction with the road. It will also allow you to have more time and control to avoid a potentially dangerous situation if one may occur. 
Accelerate and decelerate slowly
When you speed up or brake on the road, do so slowly and carefully. Accelerating or braking quickly is the number one culprit when it comes to tires losing traction during rain or snow weather conditions. It will help you avoid hydroplaning and will make sure that you maintain good control of your vehicle. 
Understand your brakes
 With each of our vehicles, the brakes can differ slightly and perform differently. Understanding how much time you need to brake safely is important when it comes to driving in the winter. Think about the time it usually takes your vehicle to brake to a complete stop, and then add some time onto that for the rain or snow. 
Only drive when alert and awake
 Driving when you are sleepy or fatigued is never a good idea. The darker and shorter days can effect some and make them more susceptible to falling asleep while driving. Be sure to only drive when you are alert and awake.
Make sure your tires have good tread and are properly inflated and aligned
 Good tires are very important for safe driving in the winter. Tires will low tread or excessive wear and cause a lack of traction between your tires and the road and significantly decrease your ability to properly control your vehicle. We recommend having your local auto mechanic look over your tires to make sure they are in good condition and also make sure that your tire pressure is correct and your tires are properly aligned and balanced.
ALWAYS wear your seatbelt
 Although this is a must for ALL weather conditions, it is no exception when it comes to driving in the winter. Make sure to always wear your seatbelt in the car, along with any passengers! 
Avoid using cruise control
 We recommend to avoid using cruise control when driving in rain, ice, or snow. You may need to suddenly control your vehicle if an unexpected hydroplaning occurs or you have to brake quickly. 
Look up weather conditions for extended driving distances
 If you’re planning on driving an extended distance, be sure to check the weather on the route you are taking. The weather could be completely different, and if snow is expected, you will need to be prepared with tire chains or winter tires. 
All of these winter driving tips will help you keep safe on the road this season. If your vehicle needs an inspection or a repair this winter, bring your vehicle into Haglin Automotive in Boulder or give us a call at (720) 316-0510 today. 
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