No one wants to get into a road accident: but likewise, no one wants to spend more money than they have to after forming good saving habits. Wherever you’re driving you should have proper information on the right tyres for your vehicle. How to find that perfect balance between investment sense and frugal thrift is a question that many drivers have to face each winter. Let us take a look at some sensible and budget friendly ways to stay safe on the roads in winter.
Prevention is Key
When it comes to car expenses, if you can avoid or delay spending huge sums of money on your car, so much the better. Your tyres are the single part of your vehicle in contact with the road, so much of your planning will revolve around them; but there are other steps you can take too. Drive slowly and steadily at all times. Many accidents in foggy conditions are caused by hurrying drivers racing along at the speed limit, driving into a fogbank and instinctively slamming on the brakes! This is understandable, but it can cause a pile up as another driver rear-ends the first, and then is rear-ended in his or her turn!
Keep a careful eye on road conditions and watch out for other drivers. There is something about poor weather that makes some drivers careless in their rush to be home where it is warm and cozy! Other drivers might also be inexperienced in such weather conditions and need a little more time and space for safe manoeuvring.
In much the same line, be prepared for the worst to happen to your vehicle. Cold weather, being shunted by other cars, suffering a tyre issue: any and all of these are more likely when the weather is bad. This can be true for drivers that are driving in areas like Scotland.
To make sure you will be safe, if not outright comfortable, while you wait for help, keep a ‘survival pack’ in the boot of your car. It should have a shovel, a torch, an old but warm jacket, some de-icer/ and gritting salt, and a windscreen scraper. Make sure your hazard lights are in good condition and ensure you carry a red warning triangle, along with some bottled water and some long-lasting energy bars. If money is tight, build up this collection slowly over the summer, so there is no sudden expense to bear.
You will be very glad you made the effort should you ever need it, and it could save your life one day!
Understand Your Tyres
Knowing how to respond in dangerous conditions is very important. If you have never experienced such conditions, you can learn about them and learn how to respond should it happen to you. There are plenty of anecdotal stories explaining exactly how it feels to skid, slide or aquaplane, and if you have the theoretical understanding of what is happening to you, it can help you not to panic; easing your way safely out of the situation instead. Accidents are expensive, and finding cheap insurance is tricky, so avoiding them is definitely common sense!
Have Good Tyres
You don’t have to buy premium tyres, but do try and buy the best set of tyres that you can afford for your car. Better quality tyres offer more stability to your drive: a factor that might not matter too much in the nice warm days of summer, but will have much more of an impact in winter, when it is cold, wet and the road is covered with a mixture of ice, dirt and road salt. If it gets especially cold in your area, you might consider investing in a set of winter tyres: you can go to the Fife Autocentre website for advice on buying budget-friendly winter tyres.
Winter Tyres Are a Good Economy!
If the temperature in your area descends below 7°C on a regular basis for four months or more over winter, you could benefit from a set of winter tyres. They are designed to work better in colder weather, gripping the road firmly, even through mud, ice and snow, and they have wide treads and are made from softer rubber, all of which means a superior performance when it is cold outside.
As with regular tyres, you do not have to buy the most expensive winter tyres on the market, but do buy the best set that you can afford – and it will have to be a full set of four as winter and summer tyres should not be mixed.
As with many things, there is a fine line between careful investment and overly frugal spending, and with your car, it is perhaps better to spend a little more to be sure of greater safety on the road. When you calculate the cost of your tyres against the safety of your family and loved ones, the equation becomes easier to understand!