It is certainly no easy when we drive in the snow. The extreme cold itself changes many factors before and during driving. Here are things we should do make our experience less troublesome:
- Perform preventative maintenance: Before the winter actually arrives, we should check out the tires. It is also important that our engine and other supporting components will be able to withstand another winter. An ounce of prevention should worth a pound of cure. During a hot summer day, we could still have decent controls of the car even if the tires are almost completely worn out. But, once the road is covered with thin layer of ice we will be rewarded with near constant slipping and sliding own the road. This would make an accident more likely to happen. Better pay a little on replacement tires now, than pay a lot later after an accident.
- Keep winter survival kit: We would never know what will happen. We could be stuck on the side of an isolated road and it is potentially dangerous to be stuck there overnight. There should be a spare thick jacket and blanket for each person in the trunk. It is also a good idea to prepare a thermos full with hot tea each time we go for a longer trip. A glass of hot tea would be helpful to increase our core temperature if we are stuck inside the car without the heater turned on. We should also prepare a package of common and special medicines, depending on our health conditions. Before winter, we could find affordable, thick blankets that are available at thrift stores. They should be waterproofed, because cotton blanket could actually become damp and cold in the winter. During winter, it is sensible to carry more stuff in our trunk, because getting stranded in a deserted road could mean a difference between life and death. It is actually a good thing to weigh down our trunk when driving on slippery, icy roads. This will give us more traction and it would be harder for the car to slip on icy patches. Some people even purposely weigh down the trunk with bags of sand, but it is more sensible to bring life preservation supplies and kits.
- Bring MRE with self-heating feature: In survival stores, we could find military-grade MRE with self heater. They could last for years in our trunk. It is also a good idea to bring dry snacks to make sure that we are able to eat during cold days. Crackers, rice cakes, mixed nuts, trail mix and granola bars can be quite useful during the night. Any food we put in the trunk should last during the winter and perhaps until the next winter. Not all cars break down near mechanic’s shops, convenience stores or gas station.