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Old 10-22-2015, 11:25 PM   #1
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Black Ice

Probably the last thing anybody wants to encounter, especially with your Airstream trailer in back. Watching the weather channel they posed the following choices if you find yourself in a patch of black ice. Do you:

1. Accelerate through the patch?
2. Let off the gas and coast?
3. Press hard on the brakes?
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Old 10-22-2015, 11:31 PM   #2
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Don't know the right answer, but the last time I encountered black ice, on an overpass just outside Dallas one Thanksgiving weekend, what I actually did was let off the accelerator and coasted through, and heaved a huge sigh of relief on the other side.
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Old 10-22-2015, 11:37 PM   #3
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Old 10-22-2015, 11:59 PM   #4
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Any change of the driving forces while driving on black ice can set you flying.
Accelerating, braking or change of direction. No matter what you choose, do it gently.

Given the three choices it would be #2 of course. But even then, let go of the pedal easy. And disengage the tow/haul mode to prevent early down shifting and engine braking.

so long
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Old 10-23-2015, 12:58 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j-ten-ner View Post
Any change of the driving forces while driving on black ice can set you flying.
Accelerating, braking or change of direction. No matter what you choose, do it gently.

Given the three choices it would be #2 of course. But even then, let go of the pedal easy. And disengage the tow/haul mode to prevent early down shifting and engine braking.

so long
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This is the best answer what j-ten-ner said ,as Canadians we deal with icy roads all winter long approx 6 months of the year so we know what it's like but if it was a multiple question test the best answer would be # 2 , but it isn't the best thing to do as like what j-ten-new said any change in driving force and start a skid.
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Old 10-23-2015, 01:46 AM   #6
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Coast and pray the person in front of you does the same...

I once had the person in front of me apply the brakes and the only choice I had was to do the same. We both went sideways along the same path and when we came to a stop I did not touch the other car, but there was barely an inch of space between the cars along the whole length. I probably could not do that again and do not wish to find out.

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Old 10-23-2015, 06:32 AM   #7
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Bur since we are on this topic, if you are NOT towing, but driving in winter, do remember that you need to apply the brakes firmly and hard to stop in a skid, not pump the brakes.

Many who may have learned to drive before antilock brakes learned to pump the brakes, which was correct before antilock brakes came on the scene.

But in any icy situation, drive slower than typical, leave more room between your vehicle and others, choose drive instead of over drive. Downshift to a lower gear on hills.

And try to avoid changing directions and changing speeds at the same time. That is, slow down first and then drive into a turn or curve.
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Old 10-23-2015, 07:32 AM   #8
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Yes, avoid changing anything when meeting very slippery conditions. I agree that even means don't just suddenly release the gas pedal: do it easily.

I disagree about pumping brakes with ABS. I have tried every technique over the years (plenty of opportunity up here!) and simply slamming down hard on your ABS brakes in extremely slippery conditions will mean that you stop much less quickly than you wish, and that you go in an absolutely straight line..... which may be very inconvenient! Quick hard pumping will make you stop faster with ABS brakes, and if you need to stop while steering left or right, it is the only way you can do so.

Another point: As I have found myself, anti-sway and weight-distributing hitches mean that if you brake with them attached, your entire tow and towing rig assembly will skid as an immensely long unit.... think about it, you may be 60' long, and trying to do a 180 on the highway! You are better off under these conditions disconnecting the add-ons and then using your trailer brakes to do most of your braking for you. When you press the brake pedal, before your truck brakes start to work, the trailer brakes will come on. It is very safe to cautiously brake using the trailer brakes..... they keep you in a straight line. This is of course an only-if-you-are-forced-to-tow-on-ice situation.

If driving on snow, treat both your brake and gas pedal as if there is an egg between your foot and the pedal, and you don't want to crush it. Do everything very easily.

That's the Canadian Experience!
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Old 10-23-2015, 07:53 AM   #9
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Both of our vehicles have antilock brakes. I learned to drive before antilock brakes in the Colorado mountains. Curious about how antilock brakes work on ice and snow, I checked - they lock up tight because there is no resistance to activate the antilock.
When I need braking on ice or snow, I'll continue to pump my brakes thank you.
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Old 10-23-2015, 08:32 AM   #10
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Both of our vehicles have antilock brakes. I learned to drive before antilock brakes in the Colorado mountains. Curious about how antilock brakes work on ice and snow, I checked - they lock up tight because there is no resistance to activate the antilock.
When I need braking on ice or snow, I'll continue to pump my brakes thank you.
Yes, I agree. If I could disable the ABS system for winter driving, I would do so.
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Old 10-23-2015, 08:35 AM   #11
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One word to keep firmly in the front of your mind when driving on ice or snowó downshift! Even if you have an automatic transmission, you should downshift to slow down, and only apply the brakes to stop after you have worked your way down to 1st gear. Considering how even a quarter-inch of snow shuts down the New Orleans metro area, I'm sure glad I learned to drive in Oklahoma where snow is an annual occurrence, even if it doesn't last long there.
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Old 10-23-2015, 08:50 AM   #12
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I actually had this happen a few years ago coming home from a mid fall rally, while going over a bridge I saw the truck in front of me fishtail slightly, I slowly released the gas peddle and reached for the manual control of the trailer brakes. At that time the SUV that was passing me in the left lane hit the brakes hard and went sideways just in front of me. I pulsed the trailer brakes without applying the truck brakes and thru the truck in to 4 wheel drive. The SUV slammed into the guard rail and I was able to maneuver around him using trailer brakes only. I reached dry pavement and saw another assisting the SUV in my mirror. I then pulled over at the next opportunity to let my heart rate decrease
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Old 10-23-2015, 10:00 PM   #13
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Folks, also watch out for slush on the road, notably when driving in the mountains in that belt where rain turns to snow. The surface under the slush is liable to be glare ice.

We generally drive with studded snow tires in winter, which can be some help. Mostly to get up our driveway.
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Old 10-24-2015, 12:26 AM   #14
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Curious, those who recommend pumping with abs--do you pump harder or faster or differently than standard brakes
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