With winter officially upon us, and sleet and snow creating slippery street surfaces, it’s important to make sure that your tires are well-equipped for slick conditions. Many car accidents typically brought on by icy highways and frigid temperatures can be avoided if we take the time to verify that our vehicles are in tip-top shape. Here are four tips that will hopefully prevent unnecessary accidents from occurring in your area:
Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Traction is essential for grinding through snow and directly related to the inflation of your tires. Colder temperatures tend to decrease tire pressure, so it’s essential to take precautions and gauge your current levels. Your car manual will inform you on the right inflation pressure.
Always carry chains. Blizzards can befall suddenly and without warning. Prevent the risk of driving in hazardous conditions. And, perhaps more importantly, learn how to suit up your tires in their metal jacket before you’re caught stranded.
Consider investing in winter tires. Clearly, if your tires are built to withstand winter weather, the better shape you’ll be when “Arctic Blizzard ’08/’09″ rolls in unexpectedly. If you have 4-wheel-drive and know your car can handle a little white fluff on the ground, verify that the system is still reliable – especially if it hasn’t been engaged in the last six months.
Get your wheels aligned. Alignment enables your car to travel on the straight and narrow, which is especially valuable for extending the life of your tires. In icy conditions, it is vital that wheels are correctly aligned in order to maintain control and handling over your vehicle.