Some of us love winter and everything about it, while others wouldn’t mind skipping right over it. Nevertheless it’s here, and as New Englanders we must face everything that comes along with it, including getting stuck in the snow. Today we will talk about things you can do if you find yourself in this situation.
Don’t Stop, Don’t Spin
The number one rule when it comes to getting your car out of the snow, or keeping it from getting stuck in the first place, is do not stop! Unless you are absolutely stuck, wheels spinning, any momentum will help you avoid getting stuck. However, if you do find yourself stuck in one spot, don’t keep spinning the wheels.
The Right Amount of Power
Putting the pedal to the metal isn’t always the best solution when you’re trying to get your car out of the snow. Use your throttle sparingly. Using part throttle may help you get out better than using too much power. If you have an automatic transmission, shift to the lowest gear. If you have a manual transmission, you should shift into a higher gear, using the clutch to control the spin.
Disabling your vehicle’s traction control may also help. Although it may seem counterintuitive , wheelspin can help you get yourself out of the snow. Traction control prevents wheelspin. You can also try rocking your car back and forth by putting the vehicle in reverse, rolling it backward, and then putting it in drive to push it forward. Doing this repeatedly can help you to build momentum and help power you out of your situation. There are also items you can use to increase the grip of your tires such as: Small rocks, sand, small branches and sticks, and kitty litter. So be sure to have some of these items on hand. Last but not least, when it comes to traction, go straight ahead! There is much more stress on the tires when they are turned, making it harder for the vehicle to move. If you’re still stuck, let some air out of the tires, giving you a wider contact patch.
When all of the above isn’t quite working out, it’s time to really get to work! Have a small snow shovel on hand to make this process as painless as possible. As you dig, create a “ramp” from the tire to flat ground, not just a big rut to get more stuck in. Furthermore, look for a large mass of snow under the chassis and remove as much of it as you can.
We hope our tips will save you mounds of trouble this winter! Drive safe, and make sure your vehicle is properly protected with your local independent insurance agent!