And now our month Car Care Tip courtesy of Tommy Tuneup!

Need to brush up on the “rules of the road” for winter driving?

Here are some great tips.

We are rapidly approaching the time of year where, as the song says, “the weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful.” Winter driving not only takes a toll on your car mechanically but demands a new set of “rules of the road.”

The Virginia Department of Transportation offers the following winter weather driving tips (http://www.virginiadot.org/programs/faq-winterdrive.asp):

Even experienced drivers can find their nerves and skills tested by winter road conditions.

Here are some tips to help you drive safely as the weather turns cold:

  • Before beginning your trip, know the current road conditions and weather forecast. For statewide highway information 24 hours a day, call 511 or go to 511virginia.org.
  • Make sure your vehicle is ready for winter:
    • Check your brakes and tires
    • Check your battery and ignition system
    • Check your antifreeze and thermostat
    • Check your windshield wipers and de-icing washer fluid
    • Check your headlights, tail and brake lights, blinkers and emergency flashers
    • Check your exhaust system, heater and defroster
    • Check your oil
    • Properly lubricate door locks that may be prone to freezing
  • Keep your car’s windows, mirrors and lights clear of snow and ice.
  • Always wear your seat belt.
  • Leave a few minutes early.
  • Start out slowly in the lowest gear recommended by your vehicle’s manufacturer.
  • Be aware of potentially icy areas such as shady spots and bridges.
  • Keep a safe distance of at least five seconds behind other vehicles and trucks that are plowing the road.
  • Don’t pass a snowplow or spreader unless it is absolutely necessary. Treat these as you would emergency response vehicles.
  • Keep an emergency winter driving kit in your car.
  • Drive smart!

Tysons Auto Specialties wants to remind you that speed and distance are the two major causes for winter accidents. Also remember that even if you’re in a vehicle with four-wheel drive, that doesn’t guarantee a quick four-wheel stop!

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