Winters in Canada can be a significant cause for concern, especially for those who have never ridden in the snow.
However, as Canada enters winter, many areas already have their first snow. Although winter may be good in Canada, winter driving is entirely different. So winter driving tips are essential for your safety and the safety of others.
Prepare Your Car For Winter In Canada
Driving during winter can be very different from driving in summer conditions, so you have to adjust your car.
With this checklist, you can ensure that you and your vehicle are ready for safe winter driving. Below are measures you can take;
- Install four winter tires
- Check your car battery
- Check your lights and replace them if necessary
- Ensure your wiper blades are in good working order
- Install an ice brush and ice scraper on your car
- Check fluid levels
- Buy extra washing liquid to keep in your car
- Check your tire pressure
- Keep your fuel tank full.
- Check Winter Weather and Road Conditions Before Driving
In the winter in Canada, driving can be unexpected, and you may not be able to avoid a sudden snowstorm.
However, if you check out the weather websites for local and regional forecasts, you will be better positioned to delay or change your travel plans. If there is a severe snowstorm in the forecast, it is best not to run into the roads.
The Weather Network provides critical weather conditions and issues warnings of snowfall and the risk of heavy rainfall.
Or, you can also access Traveler Information Service with road closures, road conditions, and driving status predictions.
Prepare a Winter Driving Survival Kit for Canada
In addition to repairing your car, it is also wise to adjust your comfort and safety in case your car breaks down. Consider adding these offers:
- First aid kit
- Extra clothes and shoes
- Sleeping blanket
- Non-perishable such as granola bars, dried food, juice, and bottled water
Also, these are essential things to have when helping another car that may have a car problem.
Clear Snow and Ice in Your Car
Another vital winter driving tip is to make sure you clear the snow and ice from your car. That proper ice brush and ice scraper you have in your vehicle will help you see clearly in all the windows.
And you want to be visible to other cars, so be sure to brush off the snow from;
- The roof of the car
- Front hat
- Front lights.
If your car is full of snow, you will avoid snow blowing in your car while driving, snow blows in your vehicle can affect your vision and that of other drivers on the road.
Remember to add extra time to your schedule to allow for proper snow removal.
When Driving Winter in Canada, Leave More Space
While it makes sense to keep plenty of space between your car and the one in front of you, it can save lives if you drive in Canada in winter.
A helpful guide to keep a minimum of three cars in length between the car you are going. Or, try holding it for eight to ten seconds between you and the following vehicle.
You can measure the seconds by watching the car in front of you pass a static object, such as a road sign or a telephone.
Then calculate how long it takes to get through the same thing. If your travel time is less than three or four seconds, it is time to increase your distance from the car in front of you.
And most of the space is always better when you are driving in a snowstorm. The right amount of space will allow you to have more time to brace safely.
If you brake quickly, your car will likely wear out easily. It is best to keep your pace low to avoid braking. It isn’t easy to park your vehicle in snow and snowy conditions.
Beware of Dark Snow
Dark snow is another danger when driving in winter in Canada, or even when it is cold. Because the snow is clear and almost the same color as the road (hence the name of the black snow), it is challenging to spot it.
This dangerous driving situation occurs when the road is wet, and the temperature drops below freezing. Dark snow is expected in bridges and areas where cold air flows down the road.
This road sign indicates a car with skid marks indicating slippery pavement when wet. It shows an increased risk of car accidents.
When hitting the snow, you should:
- Keep your tire straight to avoid slipping or losing control of your car
- Avoid braking, as this will cause your vehicle to slip
- Remove your foot from the gas pedal to reduce your speed and let the car stand alone
- Know how to use the anti-lock brake system (ABS) if your vehicle has it.
Reduce Speed When Driving in Winter in Canada
You can expect a few significant snowstorms every winter in Canada. Also, it can be very frustrating when you have to get somewhere during a storm.
The traffic is slowing down, ice locks are busy adding salt, plowing and clearing snow, and people are getting impatient.
The best advice is to give yourself plenty of time if you have to be on the road when there is snow or freezing rain.
Your patience will help you stay calm, make wise decisions, and be alert to other drivers on the road. Remember, driving in winter in Canada is stressful for everyone. However, if you follow these winter going tips, the streets will be safer for everyone.
Get Oil Change
If you have not changed your oil, now is the time to do it!
Certain types of oil are recommended for winter conditions because they have low viscosity and will help the engine run smoothly.
Perform General Tune-Up
Autumn is a great time to tune your car. Check brakes, belts, pipes, filters, fuel system, spark plugs, heater / defrosting systems, lights, etc.
Show Your Car
If you can park your car in a garage or under a wheelbarrow, we recommend using it to good advantage.
Waking up too early to get rid of snow on your windows is not fun or easy, and keeping snow in your paint will end when you are done climbing.
Parking your car in a warm, dry place will make traveling in the morning much more effortless.
If you do not have access to a covered parking lot, you can purchase a cover at any hardware store to prevent freezing.
Believe it or not, sandbags can be your best friend if you have a truck or a car with rear wheels.
Buy two large bags and place them on the bed of your vehicle or in the trunk of your vehicle. It distributes a lot of weight on the steering wheels, giving you more power when you need it most.
Worse yet, you might use indoor sand to move if you get stuck in snow or mud. Sandbags are also cheap and can be found in almost any hardware store.