Black Ice: avoid this invisible hazard if you can. Not only is it potentially deadly, it’s nearly invisible. Usually, during the early or late winter (or in otherwise freezing weather), the thin layer of ice coats the roads or pavements, blending in almost perfectly with the grey or black color of such surfaces. It’s “black ice”. It’s Time for Your Mobile Tire Change and Oil Change in Ottawa Good news is that the winter season is finished (for now) and you can get your tires changed over with our mobile vehicle services in Ottawa for your seasonal tire change. The bad news is that winter will come again and that is why this information can be extremely helpful to know so that you can avoid a collision and keep your car on the road. Plus this is a good opportunity to tell you about our Spring promotion that combines a mobile tire change and an oil change in Ottawa to get your car ready for summer! Keep reading to discover how you can avoid the perils of black ice next winter. Temperature changes. The slightest drop of the temperature, just one degree, can cause it. The sun can practically melt the snow, leaving only cold water on the road, yet one degree of change in temperature can cause that said cold water, to freeze, coating the road or pavement in the barely noticeable black ice. When in shady areas, beware. It’s priority to keep your eyes open for the ice. Even when the road looks dry and safe, remember that the areas that are covered by shade pose a greater risk of preserving black ice. Be careful! Take a hint. Maybe you’ve noticed vehicles approaching from the opposite direction driving slowly? Very carefully? That may be a sign that there’s turbulence ahead. Take precaution too – follow the guidelines we’ll give you on how to make it safely over the black ice patches in the road. Before we begin, here’s rule #1 – “When black ice strikes, don’t panic.” Okay! So, let’s break this up into scenarios. Black ice while driving. Let’s say you’re driving and you approach a threatening patch of black ice on the road. What do you do? You try to keep the vehicle as steady as you can and try to slow it down. Slowly move your foot off the gas and if you can, hit the brakes before you hit the ice. If you’re on the ice and your vehicle happens to have anti-lock brakes (ABS), then good for you – you can use your brakes while you’re on black ice, except it might not make much of a difference. It’s probably better to just forget about using the brakes, until your tires have better traction. Black ice while turning. Another scenario: you hit black ice while your steering wheel is turned. What do you do? Your vehicle will probably keep going straight, so trying to steer it probably won’t help. A better idea is to keep the steering wheel as straight as you can in relation to the direction the vehicle is moving. Why, you ask? So the tires can regain grip sooner, when the sliding vehicle slows down. When faced with black ice, be ready to react. So you’ve done all of the above and you’re safely over the ice. The hard part is when your vehicle regains traction. It will cause the vehicle to be yanked in the direction the front tires are turned. The key here is, to remember that this WILL happen after you’ve passed over the black ice, so you’ll be prepared to react and not overreact. Don’t be caught off-guard! As a driver, it is imperative that safety awareness is at the forefront of one’s mind. Especially during the winter, no matter the mildness of the conditions, it is necessary to remember that natural hazards, such as black ice are likely to be a risk to the safety of you, your passengers, fellow drivers, and pedestrians. Getting caught on black ice while unprepared, can cause unimaginable tragedy and it is always advised that drivers learn how to handle their brakes, steering and speed, in the event that they are faced with black ice on the road. It would quite frankly be best if drivers can avoid or try to black ice altogether, but in the event that drivers cannot do that, this article gives guidelines on how to safely maneuver the invisible threat. Want some good news? Of course you do: The season is changing in Ottawa and you don’t have to worry about this until next winter. What does this mean for you? It’s time to change your tires for the warming weather. Give us a call for your seasonal tire change in Ottawa to get your summer tires on so you can roll around the black ice-free streets of Ottawa. Then when winter rears her ugly head again you can have our mobile vehicle mechanics change your tires to your winter tires again as your first line of defense against black ice in the capital region. Since Spring and Summer are approaching officially it is a good time to get a Spring tune up on your car. This is the perfect time to combine an oil change and tire change with our current promotion for the two services!