Driving conditions change with the seasons. In the summer or hot weather roads are dry and cars heat up, along with the driver. In winter or cold weather roads can get slippery and treacherous. The trick to safe driving has always been adapting to your surroundings and driving to the conditions, and seasonal changes are no exception.
Driving in the hot, dry Summer:
What to watch out for…
- As the car heats up, so do you. Heat stroke is a real danger when driving so pack water, crack open some windows or put on the air conditioner. Constantly check to see if you’re getting fatigued in these conditions as the human body can deteriorate rapidly in high heat.
- Cracked, dry roads and heated rubber tyres can lead to tyre punctures more easily than normal. You can apply tyre sealants like PunctureBlock to prevent punctures but more importantly is to control your acceleration in high heat conditions. Slower acceleration puts less strain on your tyres and builds up heat slower. Also try to avoid gravel roads where possible (although sometimes this is unavoidable).
- Glare is a dangerous thing in sunny weather. When the sun is out in force remember to use the retractable sun blocker at the top of the driver side of your windscreen. Don’t forget to bring sunglasses as well. Glare can more notable be dangerous when heading over hills or checking blind spots so having sunglasses handy keeps you in control.
Driving in the cold, wet Winter:
What to watch out for…
- Rain, cold and icy weather makes for slippery road conditions. Acceleration once again needs to be controlled but more importantly is cornering. Take corners with ease by slowing properly as you approach them. It’s very easy for a car to slip off course on frozen roads. That is when things really get out of control for a driver. No matter what your experience, stabilising a car once it has spun off is no easy task. There’s no traction for breaking and steering no longer directs you.
- Cars can freeze up in cold conditions and sometimes might need to heat up before taking them on the road. If you notice ice build up around a car or the temperature indicates your car could have problems, leave the car running for 10 minutes or so before you head out. If not you could run the risk of your car locking up on the road. You don’t want to have to get out and push it in this weather!
- Battery maintenance is important for cold weather as well due to the strain we put on it with lights, heaters, windscreen wipers and more. This makes breakdowns more common, so be prepared and don’t get stuck.
Drive safely wherever you are, travellers!
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