Winter Driving Tips for New Drivers

A GMC vehicle on a winter terrain
Driving in winter is both challenging and dangerous, especially when it’s your first time. No matter how hard you try to avoid this, you will still find yourself struggling to get through icy, slushy or slippery roads at some point. Professional drivers manage to find their way through such tricky driving conditions compared to new ones with substantial experience and little know-how. If you’re a new driver and want to know how to make your first-time winter driving less stressful and fun, look at these top winter driving tips by highly-experienced technicians and automobile experts at Budds’ Chevrolet Buick GMC. 

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10 Tips to Follow When It’s Your First Time Driving in Snow 


  1. Check the road conditions: Spend time getting equipped with all the necessary information about your planned route. Learn which roads are active for commuting and which are closed and have less traffic.
  2. Keep an eye on the weather forecast: Firstly, avoid driving in winter if possible. But if not, check the weather forecast beforehand because lousy weather conditions can lead to unsafe driving conditions, making it easier for you to lose control of your vehicle. 
  3. Getting ready: Before heading out in the snow, get yourself a winter emergency kit, ensure the windshield fluid is topped up, the windshield wipers are working properly, and the battery is completely charged to avoid last-minute hiccups.
  4. Avoid using Adaptive Cruise Control: Most drivers enable the Adaptive Cruise Control to maintain a steady speed and distance on the road. But it may not be a good idea to activate it while driving in the snow because if your vehicle hydroplanes or skids, the Adaptive Cruise Control will accelerate to maintain the pre-set speed. 
  5. Drive slowly and smoothly: The key to driving safely in the snow, whether you’re a pro or rookie, is to go slow. It’s important to handle the acceleration, brake and steering wheel smoothly and confidently to avoid slipping on the road. 
  6. Steer into the skid: Take your foot off the brake/pedal and steer into the skid when you slide on the slippery road surface. You can start moving in your desired direction once your vehicle reaches the correct position. 
  7. Stay alert: You must pay attention while driving in the snow. Make sure to check the rearview mirror and side mirrors, use fog lights and be mindful of the distance from vehicles moving ahead or approaching from behind. 
  8. Maintain reasonable distance: Have at least 7 to 8 seconds of distance from the vehicles moving ahead, as this will help you have enough time and space to bring your vehicle to a complete stop, eliminating potential collision. 
  9. Take along a winter survival kit: Always carry a winter emergency kit in your car to stay equipped with necessary tools, accessories and items to help you survive challenging winter conditions. The kit may include winter snacks, extra clothes, jumper cables, flashlights, windshield wiper fluid and more. 
  10. Carry a portable phone battery charger: It’s important to get your phone charged fully so that you can call for roadside assistance when required.

For more winter driving tips, get in touch with the expert automobile professionals and technicians at Budds’ Chevrolet Buick GMC — a reliable car dealership at 410 South Service Rd West, Oakville, ON.