Getting our MasterFit technicians to carry out a Winter Safety Check for you is a valuable way to prepare your vehicle for the winter months ahead. But there are other things you can do to stay safe when driving in severe weather and make your winter journeys less stressful.
Taking preventative steps is also a vital way to reduce additional winter costs. Guaranteeing your cooling system, battery and windscreen wipers are in good condition through a minor service can outweigh the problems driving in severe weather can cause. For example, ensuring your car is in tip-top condition can save you more money than calling out a tow truck in the middle of the night.
Leave at least twice the normal distance between your vehicle and the vehicle in front, as braking distances are greatly increased in wintry conditions. Avoid sudden or abrupt manoeuvres – brake and accelerate slowly and carefully. When driving up steep gradients drive in a high gear and vice versa for low gradients: practise slowing down and stopping by using your gears instead of the brakes of your car. Dropping down gears can be an effective way of stopping your vehicle as opposed to braking and possibly skidding.
When driving over ice, if you feel your car is sliding or skidding, depress the pedals and do not brake as this will cause your wheels to lock. Steer gently into the direction you are skidding or sliding and allow the car to come to a gentle stop. If you have never driven in bad weather conditions before it may be worthwhile going to an empty car park with a seasoned driver. This way you can get a feel for turning and braking while having less control over the car.
Antifreeze is one of those things a lot of people overlook during the winter months. It’s relatively cheap and if you do not use it you risk doing some serious damage to your vehicle which can be very expensive to repair. Always check that you are using the right type of antifreeze as there are different sorts. Our Vauxhall MasterFit technicians are always happy to give advice – just ask.
You never know when you might need some essentials. It’s easy to grab a few crucial items together and store them in your car, just in case the worst happens.
Your emergency kit should include:
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