When it comes to making sure your home is warm and cozy during cold Indianapolis winter months, we know how to help. But navigating icy streets and treacherous conditions is another matter entirely. Thanks to the travel experts at AAA, we have some winter driving tips that can help you stay safe on the roads – and get you back to that comfy house of yours.
AAA recommends the following winter driving tips:
- Avoid driving while you’re fatigued. Getting the proper amount of rest before taking on winter weather tasks reduces driving risks.
- Never run a vehicle in an enclosed area, such as a garage.
- Make certain your tires are properly inflated.
- Keep your gas tank at least half full.
- If possible, avoid using your parking brake in cold, rainy and snowy weather.
- Do not use cruise control when driving on any slippery surface (wet, ice, sand).
- Always look and steer where you want to go.
- Use your seat belt every time you get into your vehicle.
Tips for long-distance winter trips:
- Watch weather reports prior to a long-distance drive or before driving in isolated areas. Delay trips when especially bad weather is expected. If you must leave, let others know your route, destination and estimated time of arrival.
- Always make sure your vehicle is in peak operating.
- Keep at least half a tank of gasoline in your vehicle at all times.
- Pack a cellular telephone with your local AAA’s telephone number, plus blankets, gloves, hats, food, water and any needed medication in your vehicle.
- If you become snow-bound, stay with your vehicle. It provides temporary shelter and makes it easier for rescuers to locate you. Don’t try to walk in a severe storm. It’s easy to lose sight of your vehicle in blowing snow and become lost.
- Don’t over exert yourself if you try to push or dig your vehicle out of the snow.
- Tie a brightly colored cloth to the antenna or place a cloth at the top of a rolled-up window to signal distress. At night, keep the dome light on if possible. It only uses a small amount of electricity and will make it easier for rescuers to find you.
- Make sure the exhaust pipe isn’t clogged with snow, ice or mud. A blocked exhaust could cause deadly carbon monoxide gas to leak into the passenger compartment with the engine running.
- Use whatever is available to insulate your body from the cold. This could include floor mats, newspapers or paper maps.
- If possible, run the engine and heater just long enough to remove the chill and to conserve gasoline.
If you have more questions about how to better drive on ice and snow, take a look at this AAA brochure. And as always, if you need your heating unit serviced or inspected, give us a call. We’re happy to help keep you and your family nice and warm.