While taking a road trip during the summer does have its perks, road travel in the fall and winter can be an adventure all of its own. However, the adventure you don’t want to have is one where you get stuck in the snow or your car freezes and you wind up in a situation that’s not only inconvenient but could also be very dangerous. So to help ensure that any road trips you’ll be taking in the next few months won’t leave you stranded and desperate, here are three tips for preparing your car for winter travel.
Make Sure Your Tires Are Safe
When driving in the winter, arguably the most important area of your car for you to focus on is your tires. If you try to drive in ice or snow with inadequate tires, you could find yourself in quite a predicament. To know if your tires are ready for winter, Trent Hamm, a contributor to U.S. News and World Report, recommends that you check your tire pressure and tread. One way you can tell the tread on your tires is worn too low is if you stick a penny in the tread and you can see all of Lincoln’s head. If this happens when you’re checking your tires, you should seriously consider getting some new or used ones with better tread. If you’ll be going somewhere where you know there will be snow, you should also consider getting studded snow tires or investing in a set of chains.
Get The Right Mixture For Coolant and Antifreeze
Taking a road trip in winter means that you’ll be doing your driving in some pretty cold temperatures. While you might feel warm and cozy inside your car, your actual vehicle might have a harder time running in freezing temps. So to ensure none of its inner working freeze or seize up, DriverSide.com recommends getting your coolant system checked and making sure you have the proper mixture of antifreeze and water. If you’re not sure how to check these fluids yourself, make sure you take your car into a professional before your trip so you can get it checked out.
Put Together An Emergency Kit
In the event that you do get in some type of accident during the winter months, it’ll be supremely helpful if you’re prepared before this happens. To do this, Andrew Hard, a contributor to DigitalTrends.com, recommends that you put together a winter emergency kit to keep in your car. In this kit, gather items such as water, food, a blanket, gloves, kitty litter, a small shovel, a flashlight, and a first aid kit. You never know what type of situation you might find yourself in, so it’s best to be prepared for anything.
To keep yourself and others safe while you travel this winter, consider using the tips mentioned above to prepare your car for all your winter driving trips.