Winter driving

March 1, 2018

Have Good Visibility by Clearing the Windshield

  Keeping the temperature comfortable inside your car may mean battling foggy windows. In order to reduce or eliminate the fog or condensation, you should try to adjust the temperature on the inside of the car to match the outside temperature as closely as possible. The reason for foggy windows has to do with temperature and the air’s moisture content. On a cold day, any moisture in the air inside your car, from passengers exhaling, snow on your boots, turns to condensation when it hits air next to the windows that’s below a certain temperature, called the dew point. The condensation is what makes your car’s windows appear foggy. No matter if the fog is on the inside or the outside of your windows, any time you cannot see clearly in all directions, it is potentially dangerous. So, it’s important to know how to make sure all the windows are clear. When you’re dealing with cold weather outside and you turn on the heater inside your car, the fog typically will start to form on the inside of your car windows. To help defog the windows, turn the heat on its maximum setting, because hot air can hold more moisture. Then, turn the air conditioner on, which will pull the moisture from the air as it passes over the cooling coils. Finally, turn off the re circulation button so colder, dryer air is brought into the car. If possible, crack your windows for a couple minutes to help exchange the humid interior air for dryer outside air. It is recommended to those who want to be warm while driving to turn on the defroster and blow warm air across the windshield to evaporate the accumulating moisture. If your vehicle’s ventilation system has a recirculate feature, turn it off. When this feature is on, your car’s heat reuses the air inside the car instead of continually pulling in air from outside. Use your windshield wipers. This will help get rid of the condensation until you’ve balanced out the temperature. It will keep snow, ice, or frost from forming on the windshield, and impairing your vision. Trying to see through fogged-up windows can be a driving hazard. So make sure the windows are completely cleared before you drive.  
February 12, 2018

Maintaining your Vehicle for Winter

  The winter season can be hard for cars, which is why it’s important to inspect your vehicle on a regular basis. This can help keep your vehicle operating efficiently and at top condition. Make sure to check the tire pressure at least once a month. If the temperatures drop below freezing, make sure to check the tires more often. An under-inflated tire underperforms and has an increased chance of blowing out when you drive. Tire pressure is measured by pounds per square inch (PSI). If uncertain about what level of PSI your tire should be, the proper inflation level can typically be found inside the driver’s door jam. If the air leaking out of your tire becomes consistent, make sure schedule an appointment so we can inspect the tires for you. Battery capacity decreases significantly in cold weather. It is just harder on the cells and it causes the battery to lose capacity. Parking a car in a garage, out of the freezing cold, is another way to protect the battery. The battery is needed in order to start your vehicle. If you notice an issue when you start your vehicle, make sure to contact us so we can inspect and test the battery for you. Look for cracks in windshields and make sure wiper blades are in working order. If you have cracks or chips on the windshield, they are likely to worsen in extreme cold temperatures. It is recommended to make sure to replace wiper blades to ensure they can handle the various elements and keep the windshield clear. The visibility is important when you drive, so it is important to have an issue fixed with the windshield or wipers as soon as possible.
January 23, 2018

Driving on Winter Roads

Winters can bring harsh and ever-changing weather conditions. Driving hazards such as limited visibility, black ice, avalanche-prone areas and snow removal equipment are just some that may be encountered on winter roads. Only travel in winter weather when necessary, leave enough time to safely reach your destination and plan your route to avoid snowy and icy areas and steep hills. Remove snow and ice from all vehicle windows, mirrors, lights, turn signals and license plates. Make sure you turn on headlights to see and be seen, and that you turn off cruise control. Try to avoid quick starts, stops and fast turns. Accelerate, brake and steer smoothly and gradually. When driving in the winter, one of the best things you can do is to reduce the speed you are driving. Speed limits are based on normal road and weather conditions, not winter road conditions. Do not slam on brakes. Apply steady pressure on ABS-equipped vehicles and pump the brakes if necessary on non-ABS vehicles. Keep additional distance from other vehicles. Typically this should be three seconds or three car lengths. When the weather or road conditions are less than ideal, this should be increased. Also be aware of the potential of black ice. As the temperatures warm up, or the sun melts some of the snow, it can then refreeze into the form of black ice. This is dangerous because you typically do not know it is there, until you are driving over it. Also remember to keep your fuel tank at least half full. This helps to ensure you have enough fuel to reach your destination. It is also recommended in order to prevent the fuel lines from freezing up. If you are in an accident or stranded, you will want as much fuel as possible so you can keep running your vehicle to stay warm.
December 29, 2017

Careful Driving this Winter is Important

  When driving in the winter, it is important to start your vehicle before you drive so you allow it the chance to warm up. As the temperatures freeze, it can lead to the possibility of issues with your vehicle. Freezing fuel lines can be a big problem if you fuel tank is low. This will also cause your vehicle to have a difficult start in the morning. During the winter months it is best to keep the tank at least half full. This can reduce the chance of condensation accumulating and freezing in tank and fuel lines. When you start the vehicle before driving, you can warm up the engine, as well as the interior of the vehicle. Also remember to be careful when driving. As roads become covered in snow, ice, or frost, more time and distance is needed in order to stop safely. Make sure to drive cautiously and pay attention to the road conditions. Driving slower can also help make the roads safer for you, as well as those around you traveling. Drive at a speed that you are comfortable at so that you can maintain control of your vehicle.   Winter can be hard on your vehicle, especially at night when the temperature gets even colder out. If your vehicle has been parked outside overnight, make sure to allow ample time for it to warm up before you drive it. Running a vehicle and engine that is cold and forced to operate at normal speeds may end up doing damage to it.   Try to avoid any unnecessary risks when driving. This can help benefit you and those around you by keeping everyone safe. The most important thing is to make sure you keep a good amount of distance between you and other vehicles when possible. Do not tailgate as you drive. If the roads or weather are in less than ideal condition, make sure to slow down so you can drive safely.