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Few areas of the country escape winter’s chill. Wintry precipitation accounts for about 39% of weather-related vehicle crashes. Rather than be caught off guard on the road, here’s how you can be prepared for winter’s worst.

Pay Attention to Your Tires Weather-ready tires are your first line of defense for safe handling on slick surfaces. Tires lose one pound of pressure for every 10-degree drop in temperature, so make sure they’re inflated properly. If you’re not installing four new snow tires, invest in two for the drive wheels (that is, two rear wheels for rear-wheel drive vehicles or two front wheels for front-wheel-drive vehicles), or four all-weather tires.

Did You Know?

70% of the nation’s roads wind through regions that receive 5 or more inches of snow each year, according to the U.S. Federal Highway Administration.
35 MPH The speed at which a vehicle can start hydroplaning on slick, wet roads.

Give Your Car a CheckupRead more...▼

Make sure all belts, hoses, plugs and pumps are in top shape. The battery should be strong (it has to work harder in the cold), and the cooling system should be filled with a 50/50 mix of water and antifreeze or other coolant. Check that front and rear defrosters are functioning properly.

Protect Your Sightlines Keep your mirrors, windshield and other glass clean. Clear your vehicle of all snow, ice and slush, or else chunks may slide off and block your view (or that of the driver behind you). Your sunglasses should be handy, too—glare from icy and slushy surroundings can interfere with visibility.

Fill ’Er Up Besides guarding against a gas line freeze-up, a full tank ensures that you can run your car’s heater as needed if you get stuck and must wait for help.

Click Off Cruise Control If you don’t, your car might accelerate on a slick patch, which could send your wheels spinning out of control.

Get to Know Your Brakes In general, antilock brakes require firm, continuous pressure to keep the car under control; otherwise, pump brakes gently to avoid a spinout.

Tip
Salt and sludge can wreck your car’s interior. Add a layer of protection like WeatherTech® All-Weather Floor Mats to trap what your boots track in. Call WeatherTech at 800-786-7113 to get your Allstate Customer discount on all products.

In Case of Emergency... Besides warm clothes and socks, stow these in your trunk: an ice scraper and snow brush; a pair of old sneakers, hiking shoes or boots; a flashlight (with extra batteries); a blanket; first-aid supplies; booster cables; traction mats; and extra wiper fluid. Be sure your cell phone is fully charged, and that you have a car charger on board, too.