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Snow Driving Tips

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Snow Driving Tips

  #1  
Old 02-11-2010, 07:56 PM
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Default Snow Driving Tips

Is anyone else amazed at how many idiots on the road have no clue how to drive in snow? I know that Jersey doesn't get anywhere near the snow we got back in Maine but what I'm seeing down here is just ridiculous. This may be a rant but it might as well be somewhat helpful so here's my angry Mainer snow driving tips.

Number 1:

When there is 9" of snow on the road, and your car has 3" of ground clearance, stay home! When I have to help push some idiot in a lowered saturn with summer tires on it from the not-plowed-at-all side road back onto the somewhat-plowed main road just so I can get back to my apartment something is wrong here. Which leads to...

Number 2:

Summer tires are
not suitable for driving in a snowstorm! (Bald tires either) I swear nobody around here has heard the term "winter tires" or "all seasons" before.

Number 3:

When you suddenly realize that you're not on pavement but a sheet of ice
the last thing you should do is slam on your brakes! I watched 5 people almost crash or get rear ended this morning on the way to work thanks to this intelligent behavior (they slid off the ice back onto a patch of tar and the guy behind them nearly smashes into them since they can't stop).

Number 4:

AWD/4WD does not make your brakes work any better!
Sure 4wd is great in the snow, I have it and I love it. But these people seem to think it's a good idea to do 55 in their RAV4 with at least a couple inches of snow, slush, and ice on the road just because they have AWD. The idiot last night that couldn't stop and slid right through the intersection on a red light was just lucky that the semi crossing saw him coming and slowed down enough for him to make it through.


I'm normally pretty calm driving but the level of idiocy I've seen on display with this recent storm is nearly enough to drive me insane. At least some of you can get a laugh out of it now.
 

Last edited by Altair; 02-11-2010 at 07:59 PM.
  #2  
Old 02-11-2010, 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Altair View Post
Is anyone else amazed at how many idiots on the road have no clue how to drive in snow? I know that Jersey doesn't get anywhere near the snow we got back in Maine but what I'm seeing down here is just ridiculous. This may be a rant but it might as well be somewhat helpful so here's my angry Mainer snow driving tips.

Number 1:

When there is 9" of snow on the road, and your car has 3" of ground clearance, stay home! When I have to help push some idiot in a lowered saturn with summer tires on it back onto the somewhat-plowed main road just so I can get back to my apartment something is wrong here. Which leads to...

Number 2:

Summer tires are
not suitable for driving in a snowstorm! (Bald tires either) I swear nobody around here has heard the term "winter tires" or "all seasons" before.

Number 3:

When you suddenly realize that you're not on pavement but a sheet of ice
the last thing you should do is slam on your brakes! I watched 5 people almost crash or get rear ended this morning on the way to work thanks to this intelligent behavior (they slid off the ice back onto a patch of tar and the guy behind them nearly smashes into them since they can't stop).

Number 4:

AWD/4WD does not make your brakes work any better!
Sure 4wd is great in the snow, I have it and I love it. But these people seem to think it's a good idea to do 55 in their RAV4 with at least a couple inches of snow, slush, and ice on the road just because they have AWD. The idiot last night that couldn't stop and slid right through the intersection on a red light was just lucky that the semi crossing saw him coming and slowed down enough for him to make it through.


I'm normally pretty calm driving but the level of idiocy I've seen on display with this recent storm is nearly enough to drive me insane. At least some of you can get a laugh out of it now.


soooo now you know what i have been putting up with as long as i have been driving


btw i agree 100% with all of these, but the rich kids i went to hs with whose daddy would just buy them another car whenever they wrecked so that made it even worse as they cared even less
 
  #3  
Old 02-11-2010, 08:31 PM
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My limited pt cruiser does great in the snow...Traction control and full time ABS works great...People wonder why I fly past em in bad weather...Im like the car drives great in it!
 
  #4  
Old 02-11-2010, 08:37 PM
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i agree that alot of people dont know how to drive in the snow, I cant count how many times i have been cut off this winter, or with how many people that are all over the road and then flip out on you when you almost hit them.
 
  #5  
Old 02-11-2010, 09:39 PM
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The last one is the one that all the 4WD drivers forget about up here.......including me once in a rare moon.......

Dusty
 
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Old 02-11-2010, 10:24 PM
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im not saying i always stay in a straight line either lol.
 
  #7  
Old 02-11-2010, 10:41 PM
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"4X4's go like hell, but they stop like everything else."


Down here is another area where people treat snow like dry pavement. The only problem is, when we got this nice little mess in Jan, the local news channel did a section on how to drive on snow and ICE.

I'm sitting there watching thinking they are going to cover slowing down, leaving extra room, and all other common sense type deals, and they did cover that, but they told drivers to do another thing if they found themselves in a slick spot.....

If you find yourself on ice or snow, go ahead and reach down and grab the gear selector and grab another gear.


For those of us that has done engine breaking in the past, we know that there is some, uh, quick slowing down of the wheels when you do this.... On dry pavement, this slows the vehicle down. On ice? LMAO It will lock the tires up. I couldn't believe that the news channel told people to do this. Not to mention, you know there was one idiot that did this procedure doing 60 or something like that and now needs a transmission.
 
  #8  
Old 02-12-2010, 09:36 AM
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You can downshift on Ice you just dont want to slow down using the motor until your RPMs are low enough to justify traction. It would then be no different than driving an automatic with the smooth transition of downshifting after takin your foot off the gas.
 
  #9  
Old 02-12-2010, 11:11 AM
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When driving on snow or ice it is NEVER appropriate to shift and de-clutch to a lower gear to slow the vehicle quickly. This holds true with an automatic also. To slow the vehicle the quickest a manual transmission should be clutched and shifted to neutral. An automatic should be shifted to neutral to disengage the transmission and negate any torque that has been built by the converter. However with a manual transmission grabbing the next higher gear will aid in improved traction on acceleration by keeping the engine out of it's optimum power band by "lugging" the engine. I taught my sons these lessons from the beginning.

Also when sliding try to aim the vehicle for the least snow packed area of your lane. The snow or slush built up on the middle and right hand edge of the lane will provide the most traction. When approaching an icy spot in a front wheel drive vehicle do not lift off the accelerator. Maintain a constant throttle pressure and steer straight. Lifting off the throttle or even worse braking will transfer the weight of the vehicle to the front and reduce the weight over the rear tires making the rear of the car want to step out. Constant throttle pressure keeps the front tires pulling and will keep the vehicle tracking straight.

Just a few things I've practiced over the years that seem to work well. I've had two winter accidents over the years. The first was caused by an elderly woman pulling from a parking spot into traffic without looking first. Not much chance of avoiding her since I was on an ice packed roadway. Her Volkswagon Rabbit suffered immense damage. The second was an elderly gentleman panicking on black ice and locking his brakes which caused a chain reaction accident behind him as he drove on oblivious to the havoc he had caused behind him. This was before anti-lock brakes but by knowing to shift to neutral and pump the brakes my impact to the car in front of me was minimal. The rear of my car suffered more because of the less-skilled driver behind me though.
 
  #10  
Old 02-12-2010, 11:20 AM
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You missed a very important point....SLOW DOWN....

It doesn't matter how great your tires and brakes are, whether you have 2WD, 4WD or AWD, if you are driving to fast you will end up in the ditch or hitting something you don't want to. Better to get there late and safe than not all.
 

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