Winter car troubles
How to drive safely during a snow storm. (Photo Credits)
The best way to avoid trouble during the winter season is to stay indoors and avoid driving especially during snow storms. But there are times that a person may need to make that drive, and all he can do is to prepare and stay on the safe side.
But what if the car gets stuck?
Gear Patrol came up with a step-by-step instruction on how to get one’s car out of the snow it has been stuck unto. In its guide it mentioned that while a 4×4 vehicle will find it easier to get out of the snow, it is definitely not impossible to unstuck the car with hard work and a little elbow grease.
“Clear your pipes. Before you even start the engine, check the tailpipe to make sure it’s clear and not blocked by snow. The last thing you want is for deadly exhaust gasses to leak into your car. Once the tailpipe is clear, start your car to warm it up. Clear the snow. Using a small hand shovel, clear all the extra snow from the windows and top of your car. Then set to work digging out the area around your tires. If there is any ice surrounding your tires, use a tire iron, a screwdriver or any other heavy, sharp object you can find to break it up.”
The rest of the instructions can be found here.
What not to do
In its official blog site, Nationwide Insurance also offered advice to motorists who may find their car stuck in deep snow. In their step by step guide they emphasized that forcing the car unstuck by accelerating on the gas can be counterproductive.
“Don’t floor the gas – You’ll always be tempted to floor it if you’re stuck in snow or ice, but don’t. Go easy on the pedal to give the vehicle just a little gas for a moment, then let off. Repeat to enhance the needed “rocking” motion. It’s momentum that sets you free, not power. Improve traction – If you still can’t get your car free, you can next try and improve traction under your wheels. Things such as sandbags, salt, dirt or even kitty litter can be used when your car is stuck in snow.”
Check out the rest of the advice here.
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The Chicago Tribune has also published a write-up that aims to guide motorists who may have found their vehicles stuck in deep snow. Like the two above mentioned tips, the author also advised motorists to shovel as much ice surrounding the tires and frontage of the car, and build traction using sand or kitty litter. Their advice in particular shared how to deal with a deeper snow situation.
“You may have some luck rocking your car out of a snowbound condition, providing the snow is not excessively deep. Just be careful, as the vehicle can make sudden lunges or slides. Put the transmission in second gear. The idea is to avoid putting too much torque to the wheels, as that makes them spin. With a stick, accelerate very gently until your forward motion stops. Then disengage the clutch (push the pedal in) allowing the car to rock back.”
The continuation can be found here.
If the above tips do not work then the best thing to do is call for help, and wait in the car until it arrives. Leaving the car where it is stuck is not advised unless one has to evacuate. This is because other cars as well as traffic clearing equipment has to be made aware that there is a car stuck in the area so that damage can likewise be avoided.