Hyundai Sonata: Winter driving - Driving your vehicle - Hyundai Sonata YF 2011-2018 Owner's ManualHyundai Sonata: Winter driving

More severe weather conditions of winter result in greater wear and other problems.

More severe weather conditions of winter result in greater wear and other problems. To minimize winter driving problem, you should follow these suggestions:

Snowy or icy conditions

To drive your vehicle in deep snow, it may be necessary to use snow tires or to install tire chains on your tires. If snow tires are needed, it is necessary to select tires equivalent in size and type of the original equipment tires. Failure to do so may adversely affect the safety and handling of your car. Furthermore, speeding, rapid acceleration, sudden brake applications, and sharp turns are potentially very hazardous practices.

During deceleration, use engine braking to the fullest extent. Sudden brake applications on snowy or icy roads may cause skids to occur. You need to keep sufficient distance between the vehicle in operation in front and your vehicle. Also, apply the brake gently. It should be noted that installing tire chains on the tire will provide a greater driving force, but will not prevent side skids.

✽ NOTICE

Tire chains are not legal in all states. Check state laws before fitting tire chains.

Snow tires

If you mount snow tires on your vehicle, make sure they are radial tires of the same size and load range as the original tires. Mount snow tires on all four wheels to balance your vehicles handling in all weather conditions. Keep in mind that the traction provided by snow tires on dry roads may not be as high as your vehicle's original equipment tires. You should drive cautiously even when the roads are clear. Check with the tire dealer for maximum speed recommendations.

WARNING - Snow tire size

Snow tires should be equivalent in size and type to the vehicle's standard tires. Otherwise, the safety and handling of your vehicle may be adversely affected.

Do not install studded tires without first checking local, state and municipal regulations for possible restrictions against their use.

Tire chains

Tire chains

Since the sidewalls of radial tires are thinner, they can be damaged by mounting some types of snow chains on them. Therefore, the use of snow tires is recommended instead of snow chains. Do not mount tire chains on vehicles equipped with aluminum wheels; snow chains may cause damage to the wheels. If snow chains must be used, use wiretype chains with a thickness of less than 0.47 in (12 mm). Damage to your vehicle caused by improper snow chain use is not covered by your vehicle manufacturers warranty.

When using tire chains, install them on the front tires only.

CAUTION

  • Make sure the snow chains are the correct size and type for your tires. Incorrect snow chains can cause damage to the vehicle body and suspension and may not be covered by your vehicle manufacturer warranty. Also, the snow chain connecting hooks may be damaged from contacting vehicle components causing the snow chains to come loose from the tire. Make sure the snow chains are SAE class S certified.
  • Always check chain installation for proper mounting after driving approximately 0.3 to 0.6 miles (0.5 to 1 km) to ensure safe mounting. Retighten or remount the chains if they are loose.

Chain installation

When installing chains, follow the manufacturer's instructions and mount them as tightly as you can. Drive slowly with chains installed. If you hear the chains contacting the body or chassis, stop and tighten them. If they still make contact, slow down until it stops. Remove the chains as soon as you begin driving on cleared roads.

WARNING - Mounting chains

When mounting snow chains, park the vehicle on level ground away from traffic. Turn on the vehicle Hazard Warning flashers and place a triangular emergency warning device behind the vehicle if available. Always place the vehicle in P (Park), apply the parking brake and turn off the engine before installing snow chains.

WARNING - Tire chains

  • The use of chains may adversely affect vehicle handling.
  • Do not exceed 20 mph (30 km/h) or the chain manufacturers recommended speed limit, whichever is lower.
  • Drive carefully and avoid bumps, holes, sharp turns, and other road hazards, which may cause the vehicle to bounce.
  • Avoid sharp turns or lockedwheel braking.

CAUTION

  • Chains that are the wrong size or improperly installed can damage your vehicle's brake lines, suspension, body and wheels.
  • Stop driving and retighten the chains any time you hear them hitting the vehicle.

Use high quality ethylene glycol coolant

Your vehicle is delivered with high quality ethylene glycol coolant in the cooling system. It is the only type of coolant that should be used because it helps prevent corrosion in the cooling system, lubricates the water pump and prevents freezing. Be sure to replace or replenish your coolant in accordance with the maintenance schedule in section 7. Before winter, have your coolant tested to assure that its freezing point is sufficient for the temperatures anticipated during the winter.

Check battery and cables

Winter puts additional burdens on the battery system. Visually inspect the battery and cables as described in section 7. The level of charge in your battery can be checked by an authorized HYUNDAI dealer or a service station.

Change to "winter weight" oil if necessary

In some climates it is recommended that a lower viscosity "winter weight" oil be used during cold weather. See section 8 for recommendations. If you aren't sure what weight oil you should use, consult an authorized HYUNDAI dealer.

Check spark plugs and ignition system

Inspect your spark plugs as described in section 7 and replace them if necessary. Also check all ignition wiring and components to be sure they are not cracked, worn or damaged in any way.

To keep locks from freezing

To keep the locks from freezing, squirt an approved de-icer fluid or glycerine into the key opening. If a lock is covered with ice, squirt it with an approved de-icing fluid to remove the ice. If the lock is frozen internally, you may be able to thaw it out by using a heated key. Handle the heated key with care to avoid injury.

Use approved window washer anti-freeze in system

To keep the water in the window washer system from freezing, add an approved window washer anti-freeze solution in accordance with instructions on the container. Window washer anti-freeze is available from an authorized HYUNDAI dealer and most auto parts outlets. Do not use engine coolant or other types of anti-freeze as these may damage the paint finish.

Don't let your parking brake freeze

Under some conditions your parking brake can freeze in the engaged position. This is most likely to happen when there is an accumulation of snow or ice around or near the rear brakes or if the brakes are wet. If there is a risk the parking brake may freeze, apply it only temporarily while you put the shift lever in P (automatic transaxle) or in first or reverse gear (manual transaxle) and block the rear wheels so the vehicle cannot roll. Then release the parking brake.

Don't let ice and snow accumulate underneath

Under some conditions, snow and ice can build up under the fenders and interfere with the steering. When driving in severe winter conditions where this may happen, you should periodically check underneath the car to be sure the movement of the front wheels and the steering components is not obstructed.

Carry emergency equipment

Depending on the severity of the weather where you drive your car, you should carry appropriate emergency equipment. Some of the items you may want to carry include tire chains, tow straps or chains, flashlight, emergency flares, sand, a shovel, jumper cables, a window scraper, gloves, ground cloth, coveralls, a blanket, etc.

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