Raise your hand if you’ve ever been stuck in a snow rut and had to try and power your way out. Well, thankfully, there’s a solution. Back in 2018, Lifehacker.com talked with the director of maintenance at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway to get the best advice on how to deal with a stuck vehicle.
First, Erik Rollins suggests that before you get stuck, you should make sure you’ve got a good set of tires on your car. Good tread, yes, and also the right tire pressure. In fact, Rollins says your mechanic should do a good once-over on your car to make sure the battery and fan belts and anti-freeze are all in good shape because winter takes a toll on cars. And, remember to fill up the tank.
“If you get stuck and your car runs at least you can stay warm,” Rollins said.
He also recommends having a shovel and either kitty litter or sand in the car. If your tires are spinning and you can’t get any traction, you can try to shovel away any snow that is stopping your forward progress and lay down the kitty litter so the tires have something to grip. If that fails and you have a manual transmission, Rollins says you can try rocking the vehicle.
“Put it in first gear and let the clutch out. When it goes forward, push the clutch in, reverse, and let it roll back and repeat the process,” Rollins said
You will probably have to do this several times to get the hang of it and the momentum you need to break free. But, what about an automatic transmission? 4DIYers has you covered there with a video posted on YouTube showing just how to rock yourself out of a jam.
This post was originally published on January 4, 2018.