Driving in Winter Weather: What You Need to Know

November 12th, 2018 by

Winter is coming, and with it, winter weather. No matter where you live, it’s important to be prepared for driving conditions that are less than ideal. Knowing how to drive in winter weather will help keep you safe, even in unexpected situations. Here are a few tips for staying safe on the road this winter.

  • Get familiar with your own vehicle. Before you drive it, clean it, making sure to get all the snow, dirt, or ice from the windows, forward sensors, headlights, tail lights, backup camera, and any other sensors. When snow falls, practice driving in an empty parking lot, familiarizing yourself with the features of your vehicle and how it performs in wintry weather. If you’re renting a car, acquaint yourself with its features before driving it off the lot.
  • Prepare for an emergency. Keep your gas tank at least half full, and make sure your windshield wipers are in good condition, with the windshield fluid reservoir filled. Keep an emergency kit in your car, with safety essentials like an ice scraper, snow shovel, sand or salt, jumper cables, reflective triangles, a first aid kit, a blanket, a flashlight, water, and non-perishable foods like granola bars or trail mix.
  • Pay attention to the weather. The best way to keep safe during winter weather is to avoid going out in it. By staying aware of weather conditions, you can make good decisions about driving in it. Sign up for weather alerts, but don’t check your phone while driving. If you must drive in winter conditions, drive with your headlights on, reduce your speed, increase your following distance, and use control while driving.
  • Maintain your car properly. Make sure your battery is in good condition, and the lights are all in working order. Check the cooling system for leaks, make sure it’s in proper order and has enough coolant, and drain or replace the coolant as recommended by the manufacturer. Replace the tires if necessary, and have your mechanic do a thorough tune-up and inspection, in advance of the harsh weather.

At Jerry’s Toyota, we offer maintenance to keep your car and all its systems running in top condition. Our unmatched service, combined with our diverse Toyota and inventory, have given us the reputation that makes us the preferred dealer in the Baltimore area. Visit our website to learn more about all we have to offer and peruse available vehicles, or just come by and experience the Jerry’s Toyota Difference for yourself.