As the nights draw in and it starts to get colder, it’s important that you are prepared for conditions on the road. It’s best to be prepared by stocking up on useful supplies and tools, in the event something unexpected happens. We’ve put together a guide to the essential winter driving checklist. Ensure you’ve got the items on this list, and you’ll be winter ready!
- Fight the Ice
Winter means cold and cold means ice. Ensure you have a couple of products that can help assist you should your windows become icy and impair your vision. Items include an ice scraper, de-icer, torch (and spare batteries) and a shovel, in case your car becomes snowed in. You may also find a bag of rock salt useful to help give you more traction in sludge conditions.
- Car GPS Trackers
Unfortunately, winter can see the increased closure of roads, fallen trees as obstructions and more. Ensuring you have a GPS tracker will allow you to arrive at your final destination without the risk of getting lost due to a road closure or bad ice on a road. Winter can also see a higher level of theft and crime when it comes to cars – a GPS tracker can give you peace of mind. You can check the location of the car from many different devices, meaning you can ensure your car is where it’s meant to be. It’s also useful if a family member is driving the car in the winter weather and you’re a little anxious. You can track their location and know where they are if they require assistance.
- Clothing and Accessories
When a car breaks down in the middle of the night and assistance isn’t close, you can find yourself stranded for quite a while. In low temperatures, this can be a problem. The temperature inside a car can drop extremely quickly when the engine isn’t running, so it’s a good idea to keep some blankets and a bag of warm clothes in the boot of your car to help keep you warm until assistance arrives. Don’t underestimate the cold. Another good accessory to have is a pair of sunglasses. It might seem odd needing sunglasses in the winter, however, low sunshine in the mid-afternoon can be bright and blinding, so it’s good to reduce the effect of the obstruction.
- Jump Start Cables
Unfortunately, cold weather can affect the batteries of our cars and result in a flat battery. If your car won’t start, it can be a massive inconvenience. If you have a set of jump-start cables at hand, and hopefully a friendly passer-by, then you can get on your way, without too much delay and inconvenience. It’s probably a good idea to have these in your car all year round!
- A Charged Mobile Phone
A dead battery in an emergency is not a great situation. Ensure before you take off on any journey that you’ve got your mobile phone fully charged. A good idea is to also bring an in-car charger or spare battery pack in case it does run out. This is particularly true if you are setting off on a long journey. However, remember to not actually use your phone while driving!
- High-Visibility Jacket
While high-visibility clothing won’t help keep you warm, it will help save your life if you need to leave your vehicle or fix your car in the dark. The early dark nights can be an obstruction, especially on poorly lit country roads, so this should definitely be included as one of the most important essential items to keep in your car for driving through winter.
Get your car prepared for winter and you can help minimise any issues on the road. Don’t forget to drive safely!