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Winter Driving Hints

Driving in India during the winter can be difficult. Here are some suggestions for keeping your winter driving safe and comfortable.

In India, the weather becomes pleasant in some areas during the winter months, while in others, it has a variety of effects on daily life. The drastic change in the weather necessitates a few extra precautions to keep your vehicle safe. Continue reading to learn how to drive safely and comfortably this winter.

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Tips for Winter Car Care

The most basic of requirements is that your vehicle be well-maintained. Regularly service it, and don’t skimp on replacing parts that show signs of excessive wear and tear. This will reduce the likelihood of a vehicle breakdown.

Winter Driving Hints
Winter Driving Hints

Cleaning it thoroughly is a must

To ensure good visibility, clean all windows, wing mirrors, and all light units (headlights, taillights, fog lamps, and others) with lukewarm water. Do not use hot water because the temperature difference may cause glass to crack. Remove any snow that has accumulated on the roof in areas where snowfall is common so that it does not slide onto the windscreen and obstruct visibility while driving.

Ignis Maruti Suzuki fog

In low-visibility situations, slow down and use your headlamps and fog lamps.

Examine the electrical system.

All of the lights, both outside and inside the vehicle, should be turned on. The climate control system should work properly to keep the cabin at a comfortable temperature. To keep the windscreen clear of snow and debris, the wiper blades should be replaced as needed and the motor serviced. A full tank of the proper mixture of water and washer fluid is an addendum to keeping your wipers working.

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Examine the engine

Cold weather can wreak havoc on a battery’s performance and make it difficult to start the car. If the battery is old, replace it and inspect all of the cables and leads. Because lower temperatures can clog fluids, the engine oil and coolant should be checked and changed if necessary.

A thorough inspection of the brakes is required

Winter Driving Hints
Winter Driving Hints

In wet or snowy conditions, stopping distances can be affected, so have your brakes cleaned and serviced. If necessary, inspect and replace the brake pads, as well as clean and grease the brake callipers.

Keep an eye on the tyres

Make sure your tyres are not only in good shape (with adequate tread and no cuts or bubbles), but also that they are properly inflated. When driving in slick conditions, an overinflated tyre increases the risk of skidding, while an underinflated tyre will not provide adequate grip. Consider upgrading to winter tyres or snow tyres, or even using snow chains; practise putting these on the tyres so you don’t get flustered when you really need them.

Hyundai Creta with snow tyres

On slick roads, throttle, break, and steering inputs should be gentle.

The fundamentals of winter driving

It’s difficult to drive in slick conditions, which can be caused by ice, water, debris, or an accident. It’s important to remember to use caution when using the accelerator, brake, and steering to avoid losing control.

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The first thing to do if your car skids on a bad patch is to stay calm and look where you want to go. Then, to straighten the car, steer in the direction of the skid; for example, if the rear end steps out to the right, turn the steering to the right.

When starting from a stop, accelerate slowly and avoid revving the engine in lower gears because traction is less than ideal. You can also consider starting in a higher gear, such as second, if your car has enough torque, but be careful not to damage your clutch. Winter/snow mode is available on some automatic gearboxes, which starts the car in a higher gear to prevent wheel spin. Some cars also have winter/snow engine modes, which limit torque and gradually increase power.

Avoid abruptly changing directions, slowing down, or speeding up in the middle of a turn. Instead, brake well ahead of the turn and accelerate once you’ve passed through it.

Fog is created by cold weather, and driving through it necessitates adjustments. Reduce your speed and use your fog lamps and low-beam headlights instead of high-beam headlights, which will cause a lot of reflection in the fog and strain your eyes. Keep a good distance between you and the vehicle in front of you to provide a buffer in the event of a sudden stop.

Winter Driving Hints
Winter Driving Hints

‘Black ice,’ a thin layer of ice that forms over the road due to the melting and re-freezing of water, is also seen in some parts of India. Avoid road surfaces that appear glossy or shiny, even if they are difficult to spot.

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Driving downhill on a slick road necessitates maintaining a constant slow speed. Instead of riding the brakes, use them sparingly and rely on engine braking to keep your speed under control. This can be done in a manual by shifting down a gear, and it can also be done in some automatics with manual control. Other than that, there are modes that prevent the auto gearbox from upshifting. Excessive braking or constant feathering of the brake pedal can overheat the mechanism and cause it to fail.

For winter driving, you’ll need the following items

There are times when there is no way to avoid a mishap. Mother Nature may be having a bad day, or your car may break down unexpectedly due to a problem. As a result, it’s a good idea to keep some essentials in the car in case the worst happens.

Hyundai Creta with snow tyres

In the event of an emergency, keep your safety essentials with you.

Maintain your warmth while also getting some fresh air.

In the event of a breakdown, having a full tank of gas will be beneficial. While you wait for assistance, you could use the climate control system to keep warm inside the vehicle. However, do not do so all of the time in a basement, garage/shed, or even out in the open. When an engine is left idling, harmful and poisonous gases such as carbon monoxide can enter the cabin through the HVAC system. You won’t notice you’re being poisoned because the gas is colourless and odourless. If the climate control system fails or you are unable to use it, keep some blankets or warm clothing on hand.

Water and food

While you wait for assistance, some snacks and plenty of water can help. A little food will keep you from becoming dehydrated, and water will keep you from becoming dehydrated.

Winter Driving Hints
Winter Driving Hints

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Chargers and battery packs

If your car breaks down and your phone’s battery runs out, you’ll be in a lot of trouble. Keep a spare battery in the car, as well as a fully charged battery pack and a spare charger.

Follow the COVID guidelines

While taking a road trip in the winter can be fun, make sure to follow local COVID-19 protocols. With the pandemic’s effects still present, it’s critical to keep your mask on and maintain social distance.

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