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Driving on icy roads

OremLKOremLK Registered User regular
edited December 2008 in Help / Advice Forum
This is a quick, non-critical thread.

I live in central Texas. It is icy here right now, and there is snow. This is unusual for me, and I'm about to drive 100 miles home to Houston for Christmas tomorrow morning.

Now, I've never driven on potentially icy roads at length and at the 70MPH speeds I'll likely be doing tomorrow (yes, that's the speed limit). Is there anything I should know?

Other information: Vehicle is a mid-90s Honda Accord, the tires are inflated to the proper pressure level.

OremLK on
currently playing LoL: Polymath
a fading melody - my indie platformer for the xbox 360
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Posts

  • SzechuanosaurusSzechuanosaurus Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited December 2008
    DON'T DRIVE AT 70MPH ON ICY ROADS EVEN IF IT IS THE LEGAL SPEED LIMIT

    There, now you might not kill yourself.

  • OremLKOremLK Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    What speed would you recommend, roughly?

    Edit: Also, keep in mind when I say icy roads that this is Texas, and I am a Texan. I'm probably making a big deal here--we're talking the possibility of an occasional patch of ice, not snow carpeting the surface of the highway.

    currently playing LoL: Polymath
    a fading melody - my indie platformer for the xbox 360
  • Evil_ReaverEvil_Reaver Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Are you being serious?

    You need to drive at a speed that won't kill you. If it's really icy, you probably won't be driving faster than 5-10 MPH. You might even want to consider postponing your trip home until the roads clear.

    XBL: Agitated Wombat | 3DS: 2363-7048-2527
  • SzechuanosaurusSzechuanosaurus Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited December 2008
    Depends how icy it is. But if you're unfamiliar with driving on ice then I recommend driving unbearably slow.

    Basically, ice amplifies everything you do. You need to be really light with acceleration, braking and turning otherwise your wheels will spin or lock and you will loose control of the car. It's a bit like sailing an oil tanker - if you want to stop or turn, you need to start braking a lot earlier.

  • saint2esaint2e Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Advice from a Canadian:

    - Drive according to the conditions, not the speed limit. Chances are you will have a slow journey tomorrow. - Take your time. Drive according to your comfort.
    - If you feel you're about to skid, don't panic and resist the urge to brake right away. Usually you'll get grip back momentarily.
    - When you are braking, try to have your wheels going straight ahead. Otherwise you're more prone to skidding.
    - If your vehicle doesn't have ABS, pump the brake when you're coming up to a stop and the vehicle is sliding. Otherwise, just hold down the brake pedal and let the ABS do the pumping.
    - Brake well ahead of any turns you need to do. As mentioned earlier, braking and having your wheels turned leaves you more prone to skidding. Best to brake early and then glide into the turn.
    - SLOW DOWN. If the roads are icy, just take it slow and easy.

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  • OremLKOremLK Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    It's not really icy. The high tomorrow is 51 degrees--it's only below freezing in the early morning. Thanks for the tips, much appreciated.

    currently playing LoL: Polymath
    a fading melody - my indie platformer for the xbox 360
  • wasted pixelswasted pixels Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    OremLK wrote: »
    This is a quick, non-critical thread.

    I live in central Texas. It is icy here right now, and there is snow. This is unusual for me, and I'm about to drive 100 miles home to Houston for Christmas tomorrow morning.

    Now, I've never driven on potentially icy roads at length and at the 70MPH speeds I'll likely be doing tomorrow (yes, that's the speed limit). Is there anything I should know?

    Other information: Vehicle is a mid-90s Honda Accord, the tires are inflated to the proper pressure level.

    Unless TxDOT is woefully under-prepared (and I've never known Texans to be under-prepared), the interstates were all rock salted and probably never froze over to begin with. Even if they did get patchy, though, they'll have been completely cleared (or will have melted away) by this time tomorrow.

    I have a feeling everyone freaking out at you is thinking New England/Great Lakes icy, not Ozarks/Midwest icy. There's a very, very high likelihood that you will not encounter any ice on the roads tomorrow. You mentioned being about 100 miles out, so if you're in Bryan or something, I wouldn't even sweat it.

    BTW, I got a message from Obs that equated installing OS X on a PC with car theft, murder and rape. Is he normally like that?
  • HedgethornHedgethorn Associate Professor of Historical Hobby Horses In the Lions' DenRegistered User regular
    edited December 2008
    If the roads are really icy, then there is no recommended speed. I once managed to put a car in the ditch while going 5 miles an hour down a road that was as smooth as an ice hockey rink. If the roads are navigable, though, you might be able to get away with doing 45 or so.

    Still, a few tips:
    (1) Deflate your tires a few psi. It'll hurt your gas mileage, but you'll have more rubber touching the road, leading to increased friction, leading to slightly better handling.
    (2) You will need to accelerate and brake much more cautiously than you're probably used to. If you slam your foot down on either pedal, you will start to lose control. Allow yourself 2-3 times as much braking distance as normal, and accelerate at least half as slowly as normal.
    (3) Keep away from other cars as best as you can. Odds are most of the other people on the road don't know how to drive on ice either, and at least some of them will go off the road.

  • rfaliasrfalias Registered User
    edited December 2008
    OremLK wrote: »
    This is a quick, non-critical thread.

    I live in central Texas. It is icy here right now, and there is snow. This is unusual for me, and I'm about to drive 100 miles home to Houston for Christmas tomorrow morning.

    Now, I've never driven on potentially icy roads at length and at the 70MPH speeds I'll likely be doing tomorrow (yes, that's the speed limit). Is there anything I should know?

    Other information: Vehicle is a mid-90s Honda Accord, the tires are inflated to the proper pressure level.

    Unless TxDOT is woefully under-prepared (and I've never known Texans to be under-prepared), the interstates were all rock salted and probably never froze over to begin with. Even if they did get patchy, though, they'll have been completely cleared (or will have melted away) by this time tomorrow.

    I have a feeling everyone freaking out at you is thinking New England/Great Lakes icy, not Ozarks/Midwest icy. There's a very, very high likelihood that you will not encounter any ice on the roads tomorrow. You mentioned being about 100 miles out, so if you're in Bryan or something, I wouldn't even sweat it.


    I'm with pixels on this one. I'm sure they salt most of the roads that are known to be icy. They did in NY at least.

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  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Just to put it in perspective, when it gets icy up here in NYS and the speed limit is 65, people go 20-30. If not slower.

  • DjeetDjeet Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Texas road system does not do well in the cold so it's a good idea to be careful. We don't see much cold weather here and seldom do roads ice up (a few nights a year) so there's no salting program. If we're lucky we might get some sand, after the fact.

    Overpasses and bridges ice up first, and they might remain icy even when the temp goes back up over 32 degrees. So if it's close to or below freezing and the highway doesn't seem icy, still be sure to drive a bit more carefully on the overpasses and bridges.

    It's still possible to coast over a totally iced over bridge, but I wouldn't do it at a high rate of speed, and I'd try to keep the tires in the thawed out tracks of the cars/trucks that crossed before you.

    edit: Huge state with millions of miles of highways (lots of overpasses/bridges) and mild weather combine for bad times driving when roads ice up. For example, at least once a year Austin pretty much shuts down because we can't handle 1-1.5 inches of persistent ice on the road. Combine that with hill country and things like 100-200 ft. high flyovers and it makes for some interesting local news coverage.

  • OremLKOremLK Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    OremLK wrote: »
    This is a quick, non-critical thread.

    I live in central Texas. It is icy here right now, and there is snow. This is unusual for me, and I'm about to drive 100 miles home to Houston for Christmas tomorrow morning.

    Now, I've never driven on potentially icy roads at length and at the 70MPH speeds I'll likely be doing tomorrow (yes, that's the speed limit). Is there anything I should know?

    Other information: Vehicle is a mid-90s Honda Accord, the tires are inflated to the proper pressure level.

    Unless TxDOT is woefully under-prepared (and I've never known Texans to be under-prepared), the interstates were all rock salted and probably never froze over to begin with. Even if they did get patchy, though, they'll have been completely cleared (or will have melted away) by this time tomorrow.

    I have a feeling everyone freaking out at you is thinking New England/Great Lakes icy, not Ozarks/Midwest icy. There's a very, very high likelihood that you will not encounter any ice on the roads tomorrow. You mentioned being about 100 miles out, so if you're in Bryan or something, I wouldn't even sweat it.

    Waco, so pretty close, but a little farther north. Yeah, I didn't think it was going to be hugely dangerous, that's why I mentioned driving at the speed limit--I just thought I'd make a thread to be prepared, since I have very little experience with even the chance of things getting icy.

    Edit: Thanks, Djeet, I'll make sure to be cautious especially on the bridges. But I'm thinking we might wait until noon or so to leave just to be safe, it's supposed to be 40 by then.

    currently playing LoL: Polymath
    a fading melody - my indie platformer for the xbox 360
  • BasketballsBasketballs Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    If its going to be 51 and the roads are salted I really doubt there is going to be much of any ice. I would reccomend 40-50 miles an hour if there is no other traffic. IF you start to fish tail steer into it and don't panic and slam on the brakes. Take your foot off the gas and just slide and STEER INTO THE FISHTAIL. I doubt you will encounter any problems though.

    If you're going 70 and hit ice there is no chance you'll get out of a fishtail. At 40-50 you've got a chance. You should be able to tell pretty quickly just by looking at the road if you'll have any trouble.

  • Evil_ReaverEvil_Reaver Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    I live in Kansas City and because of the snow last night and this morning, I drove 15-20 MPH the entire way to work. The crews hadn't salted or cleared jack shit and it took forever to get anywhere because people are fucking idiots around here.

    To the OP:

    You need to drive at a speed that matches the conditions. No one here can give you a specific speed at which you should drive because we aren't there to drive on it. Just don't be retarded and drive 70 MPH on ice.

    XBL: Agitated Wombat | 3DS: 2363-7048-2527
  • PeregrineFalconPeregrineFalcon Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Hedgethorn wrote: »
    If the roads are really icy, then there is no recommended speed. I once managed to put a car in the ditch while going 5 miles an hour down a road that was as smooth as an ice hockey rink. If the roads are navigable, though, you might be able to get away with doing 45 or so.

    Still, a few tips:
    (1) Deflate your tires a few psi. It'll hurt your gas mileage, but you'll have more rubber touching the road, leading to increased friction, leading to slightly better handling.
    (2) You will need to accelerate and brake much more cautiously than you're probably used to. If you slam your foot down on either pedal, you will start to lose control. Allow yourself 2-3 times as much braking distance as normal, and accelerate at least half as slowly as normal.
    (3) Keep away from other cars as best as you can. Odds are most of the other people on the road don't know how to drive on ice either, and at least some of them will go off the road.

    2 and 3 are fine, but #1? No, no, no, NO. Absolutely do not do that. Underinflating your tires will give you increased flex/sidewall stress resulting in poorer handling, as well as amplifying chances of a blowout.

    Speaking of pressure, you are using the Accord's doorjamb information and not just pumping it up to the maximum on the sidewall, right?

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  • wasted pixelswasted pixels Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    OremLK wrote: »
    Waco, so pretty close, but a little farther north. Yeah, I didn't think it was going to be hugely dangerous, that's why I mentioned driving at the speed limit--I just thought I'd make a thread to be prepared, since I have very little experience with even the chance of things getting icy.

    If you're at all anxious about it, I think your best bet would be cutting over to I-45 and taking it all the way south. You only add 15 or 20 minutes that way (depending on which side of Waco you're on), and it cuts your highway driving to almost nothing.

    BTW, I got a message from Obs that equated installing OS X on a PC with car theft, murder and rape. Is he normally like that?
  • OremLKOremLK Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    That's actually a good idea, thanks. I'll keep it in mind if the conditions are still (Texas) bad tomorrow.

    currently playing LoL: Polymath
    a fading melody - my indie platformer for the xbox 360
  • RetoxRetox Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Generally speaking highways stay pretty clear of ice due to people driving on them so much (at least they do up here in Alaska), so even if city streets are ice rinks the highways shouldn't be too bad. Just drive as fast as you feel comfortable.

  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    rfalias wrote: »
    Unless TxDOT is woefully under-prepared (and I've never known Texans to be under-prepared), the interstates were all rock salted and probably never froze over to begin with. Even if they did get patchy, though, they'll have been completely cleared (or will have melted away) by this time tomorrow.

    I have a feeling everyone freaking out at you is thinking New England/Great Lakes icy, not Ozarks/Midwest icy. There's a very, very high likelihood that you will not encounter any ice on the roads tomorrow. You mentioned being about 100 miles out, so if you're in Bryan or something, I wouldn't even sweat it.


    I'm with pixels on this one. I'm sure they salt most of the roads that are known to be icy. They did in NY at least.[/QUOTE]

    First, you'd be surprised...many states simply aren't prepared for icy roads if they don't get them often. This is why some areas will just completely shut down due to levels of snow that places like New York see routinely.

    But I don't know Texas, so perhaps it's fine.

    That said, though, really it shouldn't be a big deal. Your Accord is front-wheel drive, correct? This eliminates your biggest concern, which is massive fishtailing and spinning the hell out...I learned this the hard way the first time I drove across Montana in the snow in my RWD truck (had never driven RWD on snow before).

    It wasn't pretty.

    In front wheel drive, on the kinds of icy you'll probably see, mostly just keep your speed down as appropriate (50mph or so) and increase following distance as much as humanly possible. You'll be fine.

  • RUNN1NGMANRUNN1NGMAN Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Hedgethorn wrote: »
    If the roads are really icy, then there is no recommended speed. I once managed to put a car in the ditch while going 5 miles an hour down a road that was as smooth as an ice hockey rink. If the roads are navigable, though, you might be able to get away with doing 45 or so.

    Still, a few tips:
    (1) Deflate your tires a few psi. It'll hurt your gas mileage, but you'll have more rubber touching the road, leading to increased friction, leading to slightly better handling.
    (2) You will need to accelerate and brake much more cautiously than you're probably used to. If you slam your foot down on either pedal, you will start to lose control. Allow yourself 2-3 times as much braking distance as normal, and accelerate at least half as slowly as normal.
    (3) Keep away from other cars as best as you can. Odds are most of the other people on the road don't know how to drive on ice either, and at least some of them will go off the road.

    2 and 3 are fine, but #1? No, no, no, NO. Absolutely do not do that. Underinflating your tires will give you increased flex/sidewall stress resulting in poorer handling, as well as amplifying chances of a blowout.

    Speaking of pressure, you are using the Accord's doorjamb information and not just pumping it up to the maximum on the sidewall, right?

    Yes, yes, yes...the manufacturer already recommends the tire pressure that will give you best handling. Decreasing the pressure can actually REDUCE the amount of contact the tires have with the road.

  • VThornheartVThornheart Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Also, if you find yourself starting to spin, try not to panic and gently steer the wheel in the *same* direction as the spin. If you steer against the spin, it won't do anything to stop it.

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  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    RUNN1NGMAN wrote: »
    Hedgethorn wrote: »
    If the roads are really icy, then there is no recommended speed. I once managed to put a car in the ditch while going 5 miles an hour down a road that was as smooth as an ice hockey rink. If the roads are navigable, though, you might be able to get away with doing 45 or so.

    Still, a few tips:
    (1) Deflate your tires a few psi. It'll hurt your gas mileage, but you'll have more rubber touching the road, leading to increased friction, leading to slightly better handling.
    (2) You will need to accelerate and brake much more cautiously than you're probably used to. If you slam your foot down on either pedal, you will start to lose control. Allow yourself 2-3 times as much braking distance as normal, and accelerate at least half as slowly as normal.
    (3) Keep away from other cars as best as you can. Odds are most of the other people on the road don't know how to drive on ice either, and at least some of them will go off the road.

    2 and 3 are fine, but #1? No, no, no, NO. Absolutely do not do that. Underinflating your tires will give you increased flex/sidewall stress resulting in poorer handling, as well as amplifying chances of a blowout.

    Speaking of pressure, you are using the Accord's doorjamb information and not just pumping it up to the maximum on the sidewall, right?

    Yes, yes, yes...the manufacturer already recommends the tire pressure that will give you best handling. Decreasing the pressure can actually REDUCE the amount of contact the tires have with the road.

    That is, from what I understand, completely dependent on the type of tire in use. It's hit or miss usually with higher pressure and less surface area generally being better for snow driving (less surface area = more lbs/sq inch and slightly better traction). They're negligible differences though. If you're driving 50 in 4 inches of snow, you're fucked no matter what your pressure is. Lowering your PSI is only good for driving in sandy environments, btw, that somehow made it as "well snow is like sand." Lower PSI = more friction and more heat which is really really bad in winter weather sometimes.

  • PeregrineFalconPeregrineFalcon Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Traction area is a moot point when it comes to underinflating your tires. The main problem is that you're increasing sidewall flex, which will decrease responsiveness, and as your tires rotate they'll be in a more severe stretch/compress cycle, which causes blowouts. Don't underinflate.

    I want to address this "Turn into/with the skid" line as well. I've seen people think that when they oversteer left, they need to turn the wheel left, because "that's the way I was skidding." "Turn the wheel in the direction you want to go." As soon as you're back in line, wind the wheel back to point you straight to avoid "overcorrecting."

    FWD doesn't make you immune to oversteer either; if you're turning and your front tires suddenly bite hard while your back ones are floating, guess what, you're going to slide the back end out. I might even argue that someone in a RWD vehicle is better prepared for it, if only from having [strike]done some smoky donuts in a parking lot[/strike] previous experience in power-induced oversteer scenarios.

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  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Traction area is a moot point when it comes to underinflating your tires. The main problem is that you're increasing sidewall flex, which will decrease responsiveness, and as your tires rotate they'll be in a more severe stretch/compress cycle, which causes blowouts. Don't underinflate.

    I want to address this "Turn into/with the skid" line as well. I've seen people think that when they oversteer left, they need to turn the wheel left, because "that's the way I was skidding." "Turn the wheel in the direction you want to go." As soon as you're back in line, wind the wheel back to point you straight to avoid "overcorrecting."

    FWD doesn't make you immune to oversteer either; if you're turning and your front tires suddenly bite hard while your back ones are floating, guess what, you're going to slide the back end out. I might even argue that someone in a RWD vehicle is better prepared for it, if only from having [strike]done some smoky donuts in a parking lot[/strike] previous experience in power-induced oversteer scenarios.

    I guess that the difference for me is that I never once had any real oversteer issues on ice in my Civic...now, I was fairly experience at driving on ice and snow in it (Montana and all) so perhaps that helped. But yes, you can have slight issues with turning. But with a RWD my entire ass end flew out from behind me while driving straight. As in, I did a complete 180 out of the blue. Because on a rear wheel drive if you're wheels aren't all perfectly aligned (as in with the slightest bit of routine back-and-forth correction as you drive straight) that's all it takes to cause a spin-out on ice. Especially with an inexperienced driver. And with nobody even telling me to put weight in the back (whereas with FWD your engine is over the drive wheels). And I wasn't even going all that fast (50mph or so, which still had people constantly going around me which is just as dangerous).

    I'm not saying that FWD makes you immune to it, but it's like 99% less likely to be an issue in a FWD over RWD, especially for a driver unaccustomed to snow/ice.

  • Forbe!Forbe! Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    If there is an obstacle in your way that wont kill you, hit it.

    I was driving with my brother, and he dodged a blown out tire on the road and overcompensated his turn (continued turning left as we were going left, like Peregrine just explained), and we ended up in the next lane, traveling backwards at 60 mph for 5-6 seconds, facing a semi truck which was about 20 feet in front of us. We were driving in the middle of a Michigan winter, which we are very used to driving in.

    Luckily we slid gracefully off the road (he was still turning left), and landed in a freshly plowed mound of snow. He only sustained minor alignment damage, and I spilt some coffee on his floor mats.

    We could have been dead.

    If he just hit the tire, he would have scraped up his bumper and, at worse, wrecked some shit under his car. Sometimes it's better to sustain a little bit of damage to the car, or kill a fuzzy woodland creature, than to kill yourself trying to avoid it.

  • PeregrineFalconPeregrineFalcon Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    mcdermott wrote: »
    I'm not saying that FWD makes you immune to it, but it's like 99% less likely to be an issue in a FWD over RWD, especially for a driver unaccustomed to snow/ice.

    I just didn't want him getting that implication, that's all. Didn't mean to make it seem like you were painting it as a godsend. I'm saving that particular crucifixion for the person who says that AWD/4WD and an SUV means that you can continue to drive normal summer speeds.
    Forbe! wrote: »
    If there is an obstacle in your way that wont kill you, hit it ... Sometimes it's better to sustain a little bit of damage to the car, or kill a fuzzy woodland creature, than to kill yourself trying to avoid it.

    THIS. Sudden, sharp movements, such as those required to dodge a piece of debris, are a good way to get into trouble on ice. Glad you two are okay.

    Looking for a DX:HR OnLive code for my kid brother.
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  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    I just didn't want him getting that implication, that's all. Didn't mean to make it seem like you were painting it as a godsend. I'm saving that particular crucifixion for the person who says that AWD/4WD and an SUV means that you can continue to drive normal summer speeds.

    Oh yeah, those people are idiots. You have to try a little harder in 4WD/AWD, but you can certainly do it.

    And yes, unless it's a brick fucking wall or oncoming semi, hit it. You're much more likely to wind up dead trying to avoid any given obstacle/debris than just hitting it. Even if it will do critical damage to your car, trying to avoid it on ice can put you in oncoming traffic, rolled over, or ten feet off the road with your cranium lodged in a tree.

  • saint2esaint2e Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Since this has turned into an all purpose "Driving in winter/icy conditions", a suggestion from me, kind of in the same vein as the "if it ain't gonna kill you, hit it" suggestion above:

    If you cannot avoid rear-ending someone, at a red-light for example, and there's nothing a snowbank to the right, run yourself aground on the snowbank if at all possible. Snow is a little more forgiving than metal, and an irate driver.

    I did this a couple winters ago, and the driver saw me in the rear view mirror and pulled over to help me out of the snow bank, thanking me for not hitting him.

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  • VThornheartVThornheart Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Traction area is a moot point when it comes to underinflating your tires. The main problem is that you're increasing sidewall flex, which will decrease responsiveness, and as your tires rotate they'll be in a more severe stretch/compress cycle, which causes blowouts. Don't underinflate.

    I want to address this "Turn into/with the skid" line as well. I've seen people think that when they oversteer left, they need to turn the wheel left, because "that's the way I was skidding." "Turn the wheel in the direction you want to go." As soon as you're back in line, wind the wheel back to point you straight to avoid "overcorrecting."

    FWD doesn't make you immune to oversteer either; if you're turning and your front tires suddenly bite hard while your back ones are floating, guess what, you're going to slide the back end out. I might even argue that someone in a RWD vehicle is better prepared for it, if only from having [strike]done some smoky donuts in a parking lot[/strike] previous experience in power-induced oversteer scenarios.

    Good point, I had forgotten to mention that. :embarassed: =)

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  • PeregrineFalconPeregrineFalcon Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Further general-purpose winter tips:

    Here's my copypasta "Starter Winter Emergency Kit" that I posted in another thread:
    Antifreeze, wiper fluid
    Blankets
    Booster cables (6ga)
    Candles, matches, and tin cans
    Cell phone (if you don't have one, get a cheap prepaid, 911 always works)
    First-aid kit
    Flares (road flares, not a flare gun)
    Flashlight (Keep multiple sets of batteries, and keep them separate)
    Fuses (for your car, you don't want to be caught without headlights)
    Gloves (one pair per person)
    Jackets (if you aren't already wearing them)
    Kitty litter (non-clumping) or traction pads
    Non-perishable food (granola bars, trail mix, etc)
    Sand bags
    Shovel (a small folding one is best)
    Scraper and brush
    Tire chains (optional)
    Tow chains/rope

    That's a good place to start.

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    Can trade TF2 items or whatever else you're interested in. PM me.
  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    If you get kitty litter get the unclumpable kind.

  • PeregrineFalconPeregrineFalcon Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    bowen wrote: »
    If you get kitty litter get the unclumpable kind.

    Edited that note in there, thanks. :)

    Looking for a DX:HR OnLive code for my kid brother.
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  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    saint2e wrote: »
    Since this has turned into an all purpose "Driving in winter/icy conditions", a suggestion from me, kind of in the same vein as the "if it ain't gonna kill you, hit it" suggestion above:

    If you cannot avoid rear-ending someone, at a red-light for example, and there's nothing a snowbank to the right, run yourself aground on the snowbank if at all possible. Snow is a little more forgiving than metal, and an irate driver.

    I did this a couple winters ago, and the driver saw me in the rear view mirror and pulled over to help me out of the snow bank, thanking me for not hitting him.

    At low speeds, definitely.

    At high speeds, less so (obviously).

    I've only ever hit one person due to ice, and it was a love-tap at a red light. Nothing but a small scratch on their bumper and a matching one on mine. They didn't even care enough to file, and actually laughed it off because they had slid just as badly into where they were stopped at the time. It was a fucking ice skating rink that night (I think it was like fifteen below or some shit, and no I don't mean wind chill).

  • ThomamelasThomamelas “Three films a day, three books a week and records of great music would be enough to make me happy to the day I die.” Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Living in Houston, I can vouch that the city and this section of the state have no fucking clue what to do if a small dusting of snow happens, let alone ice. If roads freeze over, expect them to be slow due to accidents or just closed. There were a ton of accidents in the city the other day due to icy roads.

  • JohnnyCacheJohnnyCache Starting Defense Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Traction area is a moot point when it comes to underinflating your tires. The main problem is that you're increasing sidewall flex, which will decrease responsiveness, and as your tires rotate they'll be in a more severe stretch/compress cycle, which causes blowouts. Don't underinflate.

    I want to address this "Turn into/with the skid" line as well. I've seen people think that when they oversteer left, they need to turn the wheel left, because "that's the way I was skidding." "Turn the wheel in the direction you want to go." As soon as you're back in line, wind the wheel back to point you straight to avoid "overcorrecting."

    FWD doesn't make you immune to oversteer either; if you're turning and your front tires suddenly bite hard while your back ones are floating, guess what, you're going to slide the back end out. I might even argue that someone in a RWD vehicle is better prepared for it, if only from having [strike]done some smoky donuts in a parking lot[/strike] previous experience in power-induced oversteer scenarios.

    Good point, I had forgotten to mention that. :embarassed: =)

    I work for a well service company in Wyoming - I drive on the most deadly highways in the US, several hundred miles a day, so here's my .02 USD

    I'm not quite understanding how peregrine is putting this, but to correct fishtail, you turn the wheel toward the back of the car. IE if the back wheels slide out to the left side, you turn the wheel counter-clockwise. If the back wheels slide out to the right, you turn the wheel clockwise. If you've never done this before, find an empty icy lot or something and try it, don't have your first attempt be on the road.

    Tap the brakes. Even anti-lock brakes will perform better if you brake in bursts instead of stomping them down.

    Pre-heat your car. Let your car run for at least 10 minutes if it's below 32.

    You don't have to go crazy with a survival kit and there's no reason to carry tools you don't know how to use, but you should have jumper cables, something non-perishable (I use powerbars because I'm never tempted to eat them when I'm not stuck in a blizzard) gloves and a good winter hat. If you normally wear flimsy shoes a set of winter shoes and overshoes are good to have along. If you have the money, I personally think everyone should have a decent tool kit in the car. You might only use it once every five years, but that once will be last day you will want to try fixing something with a pen-knife or something.

    Finally, rehearse a little. If you've never had a flat in your car, make sure you know where the jack is and that the jack will hold weight and where the spare is and that there's air in it and how to get it out of its rack (that sounds stupid, but some cars have EXTREMELY counter-intuitive spare holding systems and extremely well hidden jacks and tire tools)

    "Maybe we're here to eat the sandwich." -- Joe Rogan
  • VThornheartVThornheart Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    Very true all around.

    Last time I had a flat, it took me damn near an hour to find where the tire tools were. They looked (and were positioned) as if they were pieces of metal intended to prop the little "spare tire compartment" door up (like how hoods have a similar "propping" piece of metal), so I just ignored them until I finally took a really hard look at them and realized it was exactly what I was looking for.

    When it's damn cold, you don't want to do that. In short, don't be an idiot like me. =)

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  • nilus2knilus2k Registered User
    edited December 2008
    Really good advice on this thread. I live in Chicago so needless to say I was born driving on icey and slushy roads. Glad to here no one said that FWD is the best thing ever. I have a brother-in-law who I think believes that FWD can cure plagues and bring back the dead. Of course he inevitable goes of the road at least once every year because he drives the speed limit in snow storms. Of course he also doesn't believe in buying new tires either, he says they are a rip off and the used ones he buys from the junk yard are just as good.

    Another good idea is if you have a lite car. Throw something heavy in the trunk. It will hurt you gas milage a bit but it will help your back end grip the ground better. Its especially helpful if you have a rear wheel drive.

  • JohnnyCacheJohnnyCache Starting Defense Registered User regular
    edited December 2008
    4wd and awd are very useful, but driving on ice still takes some practice

    "Maybe we're here to eat the sandwich." -- Joe Rogan
  • GlaealGlaeal Registered User
    edited December 2008
    4wd and awd are very useful, but driving on ice still takes some practice

    4wd are great for moving from a stop, and maintaining traction at low speeds.

    But they are a fucking demon for making people overconfident.

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  • JebusUDJebusUD Registered User regular
    edited December 2008

    Tap the brakes. Even anti-lock brakes will perform better if you brake in bursts instead of stomping them down.

    Just ease into the stop. If ABS kicks in and you tap the brakes while it is essentially tapping the brakes for you, it increases stop time, plus you can mess up the system.

    http://www.cnn.com/2008/LIVING/wayoflife/12/03/aa.anti.lock.brakes/index.html
    Do not pump the brake. Just apply firm, constant pressure and let ABS do the work for you. You may feel a slight vibration or hear noise as the hydraulic control unit functions. Be ready to push the pedal further if it travels closer to the floor.

    http://www2.nsc.org/library/facts/abs.htm
    Don't pump the brakes. In four-wheel ABS-equipped vehicles, pumping the brake turns the system on and off. ABS pumps the brakes for you automatically, at a much faster rate, and allows better steering control.

    http://auto.howstuffworks.com/auto-parts/brakes/brake-types/anti-lock-brake.htm/printable
    You absolutely should not pump the brake pedal in a car with ABS. Pumping the brakes *is a technique that is sometimes used in slippery conditions to allow the wheels to unlock so that the vehicle stays somewhat straight during a stop. In a car with ABS the wheels should never lock in the first place, so pumping the brakes will just make you take longer to stop.
    In an emergency stop in a car with ABS, you should apply the brake pedal firmly and hold it while the ABS does all the work. You will feel a pulsing in the pedal that may be quite violent, but this is normal so don't let off the brake.

    tl;dr DON'T PUMP ANTI LOCK BRAKES!

    You haven't given me a reason to steer clear of you!
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