Grandfather putting his grandchild into a car seat.

How to Drive Safely in Every Season

Updated April 15, 2024 . AmFam Team

Protecting your car goes beyond just having the right car insurance. It’s something you can do each time you get behind the wheel, no matter what time of the year it is. Revisiting the fundamentals is always a great way to remind yourself of driving safety basics, reduce wear and tear on your vehicle and keep your wheels on the road.

Father and daughter putting on seatbelts to go for a drive.

Drive Safely All Year Long

Keeping you and your car safe from hazards is a year-round necessity, so here are a few ways to help you stay safe on the road and keep your vehicle in tip-top shape.

Bridge to Downtown Portland Oregon skyline at sunset.

Don’t Overlook the Overpasses

Overpasses and bridges change temperature faster than surface roads, which can lead to unexpected freezing and thawing. This can create unpredictable road conditions, so keep an eye on the pavement and heed any warnings about icy roads you see on the news or traffic instruction signs.

Damaged road with potholes.

Rough Roads Can Cause Damage

Unmaintained and underdeveloped roads are more dangerous to drive on and can damage your car, too. Watch out for potholes and, if possible, find alternative routes on smoother roads to minimize wear and tear on your vehicle.

Mechanic working on car.

Give Your Car a Check-Up

As your vehicle ages, time and weather take their toll. Check your vehicle regularly for damaged or worn parts, including windshield wipers and headlights.

Car driving on flooded road.

Turn Around When You See Water

While water over a road might not seem that deep, it could be carrying undercurrents that could sweep your car away. It may also be deeper than it looks, so instead of fording the flood waters, find an alternative route.

Squirrel on a tree near a car.

Protect Your Car from Critters

The colder months can drive wildlife and other animals to nest in your car. Bang on or make loud noises next to your car before you turn it on to scare off any cats, raccoons or other larger animals that may have taken refuge in the warmth of your undercarriage. You should also check under the hood for mice nesting in your engine block if you haven’t used your car in a while.

Car getting air in its tire.

Check Your Tire Pressure

Cold air can cause your tires to deflate a bit, so keep an eye on your tire pressure and refill your tires if they’re going flat. Overfull or deflated tires are at higher risk for damage or blowout, so be sure you know what pressure your tires are rated for and monitor that range.

Emergency kit in the back of an SUV.

Keep an Emergency Kit for All Weather Scenarios

Pack a bag with a few essentials, like a first aid kit, road flares, a flashlight and water bottles, to keep in the car for emergencies. You may never need it, but if you break down somewhere, you’ll be glad you have it.

Happy family going for a drive.

Auto Insurance with American Family Insurance

Protecting yourself on the road isn’t just about keeping an eye out for hazards — it’s about having the right coverage in place to help you get back on the road if the unexpected happens. Connect with your American Family Insurance agent to make sure you’ve got the right car insurance coverage — from uninsured motorist to bodily injury liability coverage — so you can help protect what matters most to you.

This article is for informational purposes only and based on information that is widely available. We do not make any guarantees or promise any results based on this information.

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