How Should You Drive In Winter Weather?

Driving in sleet, snow and ice can be tricky for even the most experienced drivers. But if you’re just learning or new to Canadian winters, it can be even tougher. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or newbie when it comes to winter driving, check out these winter driving tips to learn something new and stay safe on the road this season.

Driving Position

It’s easy to underestimate the impact of how you sit on your line of sight and control of your vehicle. Position your seat so your knees and elbows can maintain a slight bend. When your shoulders are against the back of the seat, your wrists should comfortably rest on the top of the steering wheel. Bulky winter coats can interfere with your ability to move easily and react quickly, so opt for something less bulky when driving.

Turning Safely

Turning in bad weather requires extra attention. Before turning, slow down while travelling in a straight line. While turning, maintain a slow and regular speed. If you accelerate suddenly, your tires could lose traction. While turning, don’t make any sudden steering wheel movements.

Braking Carefully

Try to avoid sudden braking in winter weather. Only brake in a straight line before the turn and do so gradually. Don’t brake during the turn. Increase your following distance from other cars significantly. If your wheels lock and slide, release the brake pedal to recover traction, then slowly brake again.

Use Winter Tires

While all-season and all-weather tires perform well in a range of conditions, winter tires are made from a specific rubber compound that provides better grip, traction and braking in extreme weather such as wet roads, snow, slush and ice. Cold weather reduces tire pressure, so be sure to check your tire pressure at least once a month. It should always be maintained at the level recommended by the manufacturer, which you will find on the label in the driver’s door opening, on the flap of the fuel tank and in your user’s manual. Tires inflated to the required pressure will prevent uneven wear and make driving more comfortable

Cold weather brings with it a long to-do list, from maintenance around the house to unpacking your winter wardrobe. It can be tempting to abandon some tasks on your list, but one thing you shouldn’t skip is switching to four quality winter tires for your vehicle. It’s proven that driving with four winter tires reduces your risk of collision. This is because winter tires are made from compounds that are specifically designed to remain flexible in cold temperatures, providing better traction in winter conditions than all-season and all weather tires.

Can I Use Last Years Winter Tires?

If the tread is still good, then yes. To check the wear, use the “quarter test.” Put a quarter headfirst into a groove of your tread. The top part of the queen should be covered by the tread. If you can see the queen’s whole head, it’s time to replace the tire. You can also ask a technician to measure the remaining tread depth before installing your old tires. Ask them to adjust the air pressure and to rotate your winter tires from last year’s position. If it’s time for a new set, be sure to shop for longevity — your winter tires should give you good traction for at least three seasons. While not all tires are created equally and performances vary, the differences in performance when a tire wears have an even greater disparity.

Speak To One Of Our Personal Lines Insurance Brokers

In addition to insuring your home, we are committed to helping you and your loved ones stay safe when disaster strikes. When it comes to safety, we are dedicated to providing you with the information that will help improve your overall preparedness for any circumstance.

To ensure you are getting the most out of your policy, contact an expert at Jones Insurance today at 807-343-9444. As always, we’re with you.

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