Winter Time

Driving a van in winter conditions can be challenging due to its size and weight, but with the right precautions and strategies, you can stay safe on the road. Here are some tips for driving a van in the winter:

  1. Prepare Your Van:
    • Ensure your van is in good working condition by checking the brakes, tires, battery, lights, and heating system before winter sets in.
    • Consider switching to winter tires for better traction on snow and ice.
    • Keep your van’s fuel tank at least half full to prevent fuel line freeze-ups.
  2. Plan Your Route:
    • Check the weather forecast and road conditions before you leave. Avoid driving in severe weather if possible.
    • Plan your route and inform someone of your itinerary, especially for long trips.
  3. Slow Down:
    • Reduce your speed when driving in winter conditions, and leave extra following distance between vehicles. Vans are heavier and may require more stopping distance.
  4. Be Gentle on the Controls:
    • Accelerate, brake, and steer smoothly to avoid skids.
    • Use gentle pressure on the gas pedal to prevent wheel spin when starting from a stop.
  5. Use Proper Winter Driving Techniques:
    • When going uphill, build momentum before reaching the incline, and try to maintain a steady speed.
    • When going downhill, use engine braking and downshift gears to control your speed.
    • Avoid sudden lane changes and sharp turns.
  6. Pay Attention to Black Ice:
    • Be especially cautious of black ice, which is difficult to spot. It often forms on bridges, overpasses, and shaded areas.
    • If you hit black ice, do not brake or accelerate suddenly; instead, steer gently in the direction you want to go.
  7. Use Your Lights:
    • Turn on your headlights, even during the day, to increase visibility to other drivers.
    • Use your fog lights or low beams in fog or heavy snow.
  8. Clear All Snow and Ice:
    • Remove all snow and ice from your van’s windows, mirrors, lights, and roof before driving.
    • Clean off the headlights and taillights to maximize visibility.
  9. Keep Emergency Supplies:
    • Carry essential winter emergency supplies like a first aid kit, blankets, a flashlight, non-perishable food, and water in case you get stranded.
  10. Maintain a Safe Distance from Snowplows:
    • Stay well behind snowplows, as their operations can reduce visibility, and flying snow and debris can be hazardous.
  11. Stay Informed:
    • Listen to weather and traffic reports while driving to stay updated on changing conditions.
  12. Practice in an Empty Lot:
    • If you are not experienced in winter driving, find an empty parking lot to practice your vehicle’s handling in slippery conditions.

Remember that winter driving can be challenging, and it’s crucial to prioritize safety over speed. If the conditions become too hazardous, consider postponing your trip or finding a safe place to wait until the weather improves.

Contact us on 01942 778899 for details about van hire in Wigan