Your New Car: Relearning How To Drive On Ice

When you put your foot on the brakes, you expect that the car will respond as expected and that your car will be brought to a halt. However, when you are driving during the winter, brakes can respond in an unpredictable manner and you will need to be prepared, especially after you have bought a new car.

Practice Driving On Ice

It is important to drive more slowly when driving during the winter, but it is even more important when you have a new vehicle. Your car will not respond to ice the same way as other vehicles you have driven, even if you are driving the same model. After it has snowed or the roads have become icy, find an empty parking lot and practice driving under icy conditions until you become familiar with how fast your car brakes on ice.

Know The Difference Between Standard And Anti-Lock Brakes

When using anti-lock brakes, make sure to stop, stay and steer. Press down hard on the brakes and make any corrections in the direction your vehicle is facing. The anti-lock brakes are designed to prevent your car from skidding and losing control. Your car will also be less likely to slide during icy or wet conditions. If you do not have anti-lock brakes, you will want to squeeze the pedal down gradually until you reach the point where your car starts to slide and you will then want to not press any further. If your brakes lock up and your car slides, you will lose directional control of your car. 

Look For Black Ice

Be prepared to brake on black ice, which is a form of ice that isn't visible. This is a light amount of ice that occurs right before temperatures reach the freezing point and is usually found in locations where there isn't a lot of sunlight. It also often forms over bridges, where it is usually cooler. When hitting black ice, do as little as possible and allow your car to slide over it. Avoid hitting the brakes unless necessary.

Don't Drive Unless Necessary

Driving on ice is something that should only be done when necessary. If you hear a weather forecast that there will be icy rain or snow, make sure to head to the store before the storm starts. Even if you are a safe driver, other motorists may fail to control their cars on the ice, leading to an accident.