Last Updated 17 Aug 2022

Compare and Contrast Driving in the Winter and Driving in the Summer

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New drivers may believe that driving an automobile is similar in every season, but experienced motorists are likely to know that winter and summer offer different pleasures and challenges. The most obvious distinctions between the seasons are the temperature, precipitation and amount of daylight. Each of these variables can change driving conditions dramatically. Indeed, some drivers even refrain from driving in certain weather. Fortunately, both seasons do have advantages so drivers can enjoy the road if they respect the effects of different seasons. Summer heat is cause for caution.

Drivers must beware of blinding sun and take care to use sunglasses or pull down visors. Hot, humid weather may also cause windshields to fog up. Using air conditioning to maintain comfortable environment for passengers and pets is also often sensible. Parents may also find melted crayons or plastic toys if the car is left in the heat too long. On the other hand, leaving the air conditioning on too long can even cause the car to overheat. Additionally, the temptation to take long drives may lead to driver fatigue. All of these potential hazards mean drivers should be careful driving in the summer.

While summer heat can be difficult to cope with, winter weather including rain, dark skies and hail or snow storms are sure to challenge even the most experienced drivers. Drivers often experience limited visibility during precipitation or heavy fog, which requires them to slow down or even wait out the worst weather. Special equipment such as chains may be needed. Another difficulty is the potential for cars to freeze overnight. Drivers must also watch out for icy on roads that can cause skidding and accidents. Summer and winter can both cause dangerous conditions; however, there are opportunities to enjoy the open road in both seasons.

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Summer allows time for leisurely drives with high visibility, mild weather and to special destinations such as the beach. Roads that may be impassable in the winter are typically open in the summer as well so that drivers can enjoy unusual terrain. In contrast, while winter driving may be limited by less light and harsher weather, driving through a snowy landscape or holiday light displays are uniquely beautiful experiences. Further, winter driving is associated with Thanksgiving and Christmas gatherings that reunite families. It is clear that in rain or shine, there are risks and rewards to taking to the road.

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