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How to drive in snow? - Page 2

post #31 of 53
This may be the one thing I really like about living in the DC area. The vast majority of the people here have no idea how to drive in the snow...and they know it.

When we get any decent amount of snow they barracade themselves in their homes with their 10 gallons of milk and 50 rolls of toilet paper, and the roads to the local resorts, and the resorts themselves, are empty.
post #32 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Colossus178
If you're driving a rear wheel drive, and you start to slide, you don't want your rear wheels to keep pushing you. Put the transmission into neutral, or put in the clutch. (If you're driving a vehicle with an automatic transmission, all you have to do is punch the shift lever forward. Give it a quick, hard bang with the heel of your hand, and it will pop into neutral.)
If you're driving a rear wheel drive and the front looks like it's not going to make it around the corner, slap that sucker into low. The engine torque will load up the front wheels and perhaps give it enough bite.

Oh and if you should end up in the ditch on a crowned road during a freezing rain storm while aiming for the side of the road to get more traction, you will NEVER live it down.
post #33 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost
Oh and if you should end up in the ditch on a crowned road during a freezing rain storm while aiming for the side of the road to get more traction, you will NEVER live it down.
You're right: if the road is a sheet of ice from one side to the other, that strategy probably won't work. However, if there is a good deal of gravel on the shoulder, it will work.

Driving in a freezing rain is a whole different ball of wax than driving in snow.
post #34 of 53
My dad did just that (ended up creeping into the ditch) trying to make it up a hill on a gravel road. We teased him mercilessly for years. We were bad , but we still laugh about it.
post #35 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by lennyblake
Only do this if you DON'T have abs. abs pumps the brakes for you, if you have them, maintain a steady pressure on the brake pedal.
This has me wondering, I think my van's rear brakes are anti lock, but the front aren't.
post #36 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach13
This may be the one thing I really like about living in the DC area. The vast majority of the people here have no idea how to drive in the snow...and they know it.

When we get any decent amount of snow they barracade themselves in their homes with their 10 gallons of milk and 50 rolls of toilet paper, and the roads to the local resorts, and the resorts themselves, are empty.
It's even more fun here....A few days after the storm (that would be 3" or more), it's time to go out and replace the mail box again.
post #37 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lodro
That is hilarious...I only ever went to Blue know once in the early nineties when I was living in DC having recently moved out form Utah. Driving to Blue Knob I was like "this has to be the coolest road I have seen in the east." At the time I was driving a 4000 quattro and I went to town. Scared the bejesus out of my passengers, none of whom I knew..
Try Rt. 129 on the NC/Tenn border...318 turns in 11 miles. It IS the coolest road in the east
post #38 of 53
Tail of Dragon, and yes Phil is right.
post #39 of 53
Side of the road:

There usually is soft snow at the side of the road that you can grab traction from. Sometimes the road will ice up big time and I find that if I keep two tires on the side, it helps give traction. You can't do that on the Northway (Albany to Montreal) and people will fly even in icy conditions. Seen plenty of accidents under those conditions and often its a Ford Explorer with shi#y tires going way too fast.
post #40 of 53
How many ppl do you see on Snowpack driving on the drip line. NONE. Good drivers know to search for traction. Another trick if your wiping your feet on a pull is to gently steer your motor car back and forth across the grade to transfer weight for traction. No I didn't stay at The Holiday Inn but I am a Professional driver.
post #41 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by verdugan
Wow guys! TVM. More good info that I ever thought I would get. The only thing I'm missing now is some snow so I can practice. Again, thank you.
Move out West (not Colorado, it never snows here, but out West)
post #42 of 53
*Add weight to the lighter rear-end of an auto to prevent fish-tailing.

*As mentioned, in wet/snowy/icy road conditions, anticipate problem/crisis turns or intersections well ahead of reaching them, if possible.

*...as mentioned, just slow down in bad weather
post #43 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost
Oh and if you should end up in the ditch on a crowned road during a freezing rain storm while aiming for the side of the road to get more traction, you will NEVER live it down.
Think that's bad? When I was 15, I had my 2 day old learner's permit in my pocket when my father sent me from the base lodge to get the car from the shuttle lot. Fairly simple task, just drive the thing up the hill, across a flat side road, then pick up the family at the base.

I'm driving the family's brand new LandCruiser. Salesman must have told us 10 times, "You cannot get this thing stuck...it's impossible." Well, with Murphy as my co-pilot, I managed to drift off the road into a culvert filled with 3 feet of fresh powder! The truck was tilted at a 30+ degree angle. I start rocking it, throw it into 4WD low, lock all 3 differentials...nothing is working.

Finally I call them on the radio..."Um, we've got a little problem here, Dad. The truck is stuck." After 30 seconds of silence, the radio crackles with, "So get it out!" To this day I still hear about "the only time someone got that truck stuck!"
post #44 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by iskitoofast4u
Finally I call them on the radio..."Um, we've got a little problem here, Dad. The truck is stuck." After 30 seconds of silence, the radio crackles with, "So get it out!" To this day I still hear about "the only time someone got that truck stuck!"
I have to tell a story on myself as well. Driving up Big Cottonwood I went up Guardsman (narrow access road winding up steep incline)to turn around IIRC. We were in a rented 4runner. 3-point turn and ending out on the edge of the road. What I didn't realize was that, although the plow made a nice wide smooth road, there wasn't actually a road off on the right side, just a nicely graded pile of powder with a dropoff underneath it. Needless to say the next thing I know I am also hanging off this incline at a 30 degree angle. My wife gave me the 'you are the biggest idiot I have ever known' look. On my last day home and instead of skiing waiting 3 hours for a tow truck.
post #45 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by volantaddict
Pump brakes to slow down rather than applying consistant pressure.
don't do this if your subaru has ABS brakes. it does this for you far more efficiently and effectively than your foot can.
post #46 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lodro
I have to tell a story on myself as well. Driving up Big Cottonwood I went up Guardsman (narrow access road winding up steep incline)to turn around IIRC. We were in a rented 4runner. 3-point turn and ending out on the edge of the road. What I didn't realize was that, although the plow made a nice wide smooth road, there wasn't actually a road off on the right side, just a nicely graded pile of powder with a dropoff underneath it. Needless to say the next thing I know I am also hanging off this incline at a 30 degree angle. My wife gave me the 'you are the biggest idiot I have ever known' look. On my last day home and instead of skiing waiting 3 hours for a tow truck.
Backed off the road,eh. Off-Road Rule#6-Always keep your drivers on the road. Next time let the Misses drive.
post #47 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by steelman
Antilock Brakes do the same thing as pumping the brakes - they deliver controlled pulses of fluid. That being said it wont hurt to pump them also.
Hold on there. It is NOT GOOD to pump Antilock brakes. pumping them greatly reduces their effectiveness. Many others have said this and it has been proven. If anyone does not know if they have ABS, find a quiet, snow-covered back road (or your driveway) and stomp the brake (you'd don't need to be going that fast). If you have ABS you should feel a vibration in the pedal or hear a mechanical sound and you won't skid sideways.

I find that the less I brake, the better off I am. I drive a stick, so it's easy to downshift and let the engine do the braking. One thing to be careful of is that your downshifts are not too jerky; this can be just as bad as locking the brakes. Give the gas pedal a bit of a tap when downshifting so you don't do it too abruptly.
post #48 of 53
"and stomp the brake"

That's my point - who stomps the brake. ABS breaks are great for people who go around stomping the brake. That's not how I drive. Freakin ABS goes off when you don't need it. If you don't fully apply the brake it doesn't work right.

In the situation with the van - that is a good use of ABS. The back end is light so the breaks lock up easily. ABS will prevent that.
post #49 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Birdman829
One thing to be careful of is that your downshifts are not too jerky; this can be just as bad as locking the brakes. Give the gas pedal a bit of a tap when downshifting so you don't do it too abruptly.
An advanced technique that is fun to practice is "heel and toe" shifting. The name is kind of a misnomer. The idea is to have your foot on both the gas and brake. The left side on the brake and then the right slightly overlaps the gas pedal. This is easier on some cars then others, depending on the distance and placement of the pedals - it is very easy to do in my Outback. This way, by rolling your foot to the right you can control the gas. The idea then is to give the car gas when downshifting to match the revs to what they will be in the next lower gear. Downshifts become *much* smoorther, your clutch gets less wear, and the car doesn't get upset. It actually sounds harder than it is, but it does take practice.
post #50 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by freeskinow
"and stomp the brake"

That's my point - who stomps the brake.
And that is the problem. Not enough people do. They underestimate the stopping power of the car and don't get on the brake hard enough or quickly enough. Many studies have born this out, and this is why MB, Infinit and other brands now have systems that immediatly go to full brake power when emergency braking is detected. So that is why for the vast majority of drivers "stomp on the brake" is very good advice. Now for a very expereinced driver who know how to get to threshold quickly that may not be what you want to do, but for most drivers it is very good advice.
post #51 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by slider
Next time let the Misses drive.
Well, if I called her "The Misses" I would have been making a much bigger idiot of myself than even that. Anyway she a) has no room to talk and b) is no longer in the picture.
post #52 of 53
A few extras, Rain X your windows snow, ice, freezing rain will sluff off sometimes immediately. I have a 4x4 diesel trk, downhill I pick the right gear before starting down hill, so I can stay off the brakes. Your car will not turn with the front brakes locked up so stay off the brakes as much as possible. Slow down for turns ever big ones on the freeway. Remember snow most of the ytime won't cause an accident - other drivers cause them-so stay away from the idiots out there. Speed is bad expecially down hill and in curves. If you are in the snow a lot get snow tires and leave the all season tires for summer. Slow Down
post #53 of 53
Main thing -- just because the idiot driving next to you thinks 60 MPH is okay in blowing snow, don't follow his lead. Slow, methodical driving with NO sudden turns or stops. And if you have anti-lock brakes remember DONT take your foot off the brake -- let the brakes do the pumping.

Quote:
Originally Posted by verdugan
I've been reading the threads about AWD or not, which car for skiing, etc. The one thing everybody says is that AWD is no substitute for knowing how to drive in snow.

Well, I grew up in Mexico, so needless to say I didn't get much practice driving in snow. I'll have a Subaru for winter driving. Can anybody offer any do's/don'ts?

TIA

Angel
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