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Winter Car Safety Tips for Stress-Free Family Travel

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Last year, a record number of Americans took to the roads for holiday travel, with statistics showing that roughly 107.3 million people traveled 50 miles or more from home from December 23rd through January 1st. If you and your family are among the millions of people all around the country who plan on having a fun road trip this winter, there are a few things you’ll want to consider and take care of before packing the kids up and heading out into the wintery wonderland that can be icy roads and sleet storms.

Give Your Car a Pre-Winter Tune-Up

As summer temperatures continue to rise all around the country, it’s becoming increasingly more important to ensure you’ve gotten your car serviced after the blistering summer days come to a halt and the leaves begin to change. This is especially important regarding your car’s battery as it could have gotten zapped by hot summer heat and can sometimes be the first thing to be affected by really cold spells. As an auto tech to ensure your brakes, tires, headlights and windshield wipers are all functioning properly as they’ll be important when driving in winter weather as well.

One of the first things all the drivers do before the winter and snow are tires check and change. So make sure your tires for winter have not been used for more than 3 years and you check their pressure every month. If that is the time to change them it is important to research some information to get the relevant tires for your vehicle. You can get acquainted with brands of tires by searching different blogs and guides, such as an auto blog or cartalk website. If you want specific information which will help you decide between Firestone or Kumho tire brands, you can read reviews about them by searching review of Kumho tires, which can help you know all the features and tire types.

This can also be a good time to take a look back over your car insurance policy and ensure that you’ve got coverage that is ideal for the car you have and the way that your family uses it. Mid-range luxury cars, for example, require different types of coverage than a small compact car and ensuring that you’ve got the right auto insurance can make all the difference in the peace of mind you’ll feel when driving during inclement and icy weather.


Assess Road Conditions Before Heading Out

If you plan on taking a multi-day road trip, it’s especially important to assess the road conditions before packing everybody up and pushing down on that pedal. If you have weather apps on your phone, turn on the notifications and let your co-pilot monitor them while you drive to ensure you won’t come across any dangerous roads ahead. If you’re driving on icy or snowy roads, never try to drive on a road where you can’t clearly see the road below the snow. Pay close attention to the distance between you and the car in front of you and increase the following distance you put between you and them to at least eight to ten seconds. It’s recommended to try and also avoid braking suddenly and slowing your vehicle by taking your feet off the gas instead of actually braking. Lower your speed, avoid distractions from the little ones in the back, and never use your phone while driving.


Stay Safe and Warm

While it’s recommended to have an emergency safety kit in your car at all times, this should definitely be taken to heart if you’re traveling with your family during the cold winter months, Flashlights, flares, jumper cables and a few extra blankets will go a long way if you run into trouble on the road and need to stop for a certain amount of time. If you want to make this type of travel a little more fun, you can always let your kids get in on the planning and let them make their own “emergency” car kit by allowing them to design their own small box and fill it with things they would want if they were stuck in the car for more than a couple hours at a time. As an expert mom, you’ll want to throw in handy items such as hand warmers, gloves and bottles of water or juice. You’ll be so prepared that winter travel will be as chill as you are.

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