Safe driving is a number one priority for many Minnesota drivers. Whether you are commuting to work or heading out on a cross-country road trip, you want to ensure you arrive at your final destination safe and sound. One often overlooked key to safe driving is visibility while you’re driving. But what steps can you take to improve your visibility as you drive? If you’re wondering what you can do to improve driving safety, then keep reading for everything you need to know about increasing your visibility.
Uncover your windows
Let’s start at the beginning – better visibility begins with a clear view out all of your windows. It’s important you clear your windows from any obstacles like sun shades in the back seat or when you have a lot to transport. Make sure that you roll those sun shades up on all your windows before you leave the house. When it comes to transporting things like boxes, groceries, or anything else there are a few things to keep in mind. First, it’s a good idea to leave the middle of your back seat or trunk area in a SUV open for better visibility through your rear view mirror. Stack items on either side so you can see clearly out the back. Second, you can purchase car organizers to keep your belongings out of your sight line. For example, if driving with hanging clothes in your back seat – you can purchase a hanger that wraps hanging clothes off your passenger seat so that they don’t block your view.
Clean your windshield
You probably already know this, but a dirty windshield can cause a visibility challenge when driving. This is even more of a problem at night as street lights and oncoming headlights can highlight haze and smudges – making it difficult to see. To solve this problem, we recommend making a habit out of cleaning your windshield every time you fill up for gas.
Check your windshield wipers
Speaking of keeping your windshield clean, it’s a good idea to check your windshield wiper blades. Your blades can become dull with time leaving smudges in drier weather and water and ice in wet weather. We recommend replacing your windshield wiper blades every 6 month so if it’s been a while consider replacing them. And while we’re thinking of it, it’s a good idea to keep your windshield washer fluid filled to appropriate levels so when your windshield gets dirty while driving, you’re prepared to keep it clean and clear.
Clean your headlights
Your headlights are easy to overlook. Dirt and debris can accumulate over time which can dim your headlights making it difficult to see at night. While you’re cleaning your windshield when you fill up, it’s a good idea to inspect those headlights and clean any dirt and debris. While you’re checking, you’ll also want to ensure they are in working order – so replace any burned out bulbs when you notice them for greater visibility when you drive at night.
Repair chips and cracks on your windshield
We’ve all had it happen. You’re driving along when all of a sudden a small pebble comes flying at you which forms a chip or a small crack. It may be tempting to keep driving for weeks so you can get to it later. But that small chip can develop into a windshield long crack in an instant, it can become a visibility problem when left unattended. We recommend fixing chips or cracks in your windshield right away before it becomes a problem.
Minimize your blind spots
Many new cars come with a blind spot warning system, but if your car doesn’t have one of those – there are some quick fixes to minimize those blind spots. Your side mirrors should be out 15 degrees from both sides. For your left side mirror, lean your head so that it’s even with the driver side window and adjust the mirror so you can see the side of your car. For the right side mirror, do the same but from the center of the car. Adjusting your mirrors in this manner should minimize your blind spot and give you greater visibility.
Inspecting these items and making the appropriate adjustments will improve your visibility while driving. If you have any questions about making adjustments to your car for greater visibility, we’d love to help. Simply make an appointment and our team will inspect and optimize your car for improved visibility no matter where the road may take you.