Driving on slippery ice can be dangerous. You may not be aware that wet leaves can be just as slick! If you live in an area that has trees that drop their leaves, or if you're traveling in an area where the fall foliage is worth a look, here are a few things that could help you avoid an accident.
Leaves are similar to ice when they get wet and create a barrier between the road and your tires. With ice, it's a layer of water. With leaves, it's the slippery surface they have on both sides added to a layer of water.
Some tests have shown that stopping distances more than double when you're traveling on a road with wet leaves compared to that same street that's dry and clear of debris. Speed is your biggest enemy when you encounter any slippery surface, so slow down when you are driving on any slick conditions. What should you do if your vehicle loses traction and begins to skid? Take your foot off the gas but DO NOT slam on the brakes. Braking hard will only increase the slide. Point your wheels in the direction you want your vehicle to go. As your vehicle straightens out, you’ll need to adjust your steering again.
Having tires with enough tread will help you in challenging road conditions. Your Service Advisor can help you choose the right tire for your driving habits. After all, your tire is the point of traction between the road and your vehicle. Also, this might be a good time to have your tires evaluated. How is your tread depth? What condition is the rubber in your tires? Rubber doesn't age like a fine wine; it gets more brittle with age and can start to deteriorate not only because of the wear and tear it takes but simply from the number of years that have passed since your tires were manufactured.
Remember to always keep an eye on the road ahead and never drive too fast for conditions, wet leaves or not. It's a simple tip to remember, and it really works.
Old Town Automotive <br/>707.443-4556 <br/>www.oldtownauto.com
Revised from content contributed by NAPA Service Assistant