An icy road or unexpected snowfall shouldn’t mean slipping, skidding and stalling.

The challenges of winter driving can be distilled into two key elements: reduced traction and reduced visibility. This guide is full of simple, practical advice on preparing your vehicle and adapting your road skills to account for these changes.

With good preparation, and basic knowledge of how the cold affects conditions, you can travel safely and confidently in any weather.


When there is a freezing night, try and keep a windscreen cover on the car overnight. Whenever possible, keep your car in a garage.

Before travelling, make sure all lights are working properly and windscreen wiper blades are in good condition. Check the oil, coolant and washer fluid levels.

Use good quality screenwash which protects down to -20°C. In case the wipers are frozen to the screen, turn off automatic wiper control before starting the car.

Check the forecast before setting off. Frosty weather significantly affects terrain and road safety.

Remember to give extra time for every drive.


When driving in wintery conditions, on or off road, it’s a good idea to carry the following:

– Heavy-duty jump leads

– Tow rope

– Torch, with spare batteries

– Light bulb kit and fuse range

– De-icer and windscreen scraper

– Shovel

– Waterproof boots or wellington boots

– Sunglasses (help reduce glare from low sun)

– Warm clothes and a blanket

– High energy food and drink

– Traction aids

– Snow chains (for very icy roads or deep snow)


Keep your speed down and allow significantly greater stopping distances.

Use progressive throttle, gentle steering and progressive braking.

Always keep both hands on the wheel, even when reversing.

If you’re taking a long journey or travelling in bad weather, let a relative or friend know your intended route and ETA.

Tune in to travel and weather updates on the radio.

For help, advice or a Winter health check, please don't hesitate to get in touch.

Contact us.