Skip to content ↓

How To Survive A Canadian Winter

It’s cold today, there is a bit of snow on the ground and this morning my windshield wipers were frozen to the windshield. Put it all together and it is clear that winter has arrived in Southern Ontario. Here are some tips to survive a Canadian winter.

Rock Salt – You won’t make it through the winter without a bag of this stuff. It should not be confused with your standard table salt or with a bagful of the little salt packets from McDonald’s. The big chunks of salt melt ice and add valuable traction on slick roads. If you don’t put down a good base of salt you’ll find that next time there is a good snowstorm you will be unable to navigate your driveway, walkway or sidewalk. The ideal amount of salt will burn away all grass within six inches of your driveway.

Just Don’t – Don’t eat the yellow snow. Ever. Actually, these days it’s probably best just not to eat any snow, even that light grey (formerly white) stuff.

Stay Back – When the snow is all yucky and slushy, you’ll want to be sure you stay at least a couple feet back from the road. Those snowplows can get quite a head of steam and if they drive through a slush-puddle just as you’re walking by, it can ruin your day (and your MP3 player).

Car Washes – Salt does not only destroy snow – it also destroys the body of your car. It is important to try to get into a carwash at least a couple of times every winter and definitely in the spring once the salt has been cleared away. Take car getting your car washed on a very cold day as you may find yourself entombed in your frozen vehicle, unable to open doors and windows.

Drive-Thru Etiquette – When pulling up to a drive-thru window, ensure you pull ahead just a little bit too far. That way if your windows are frozen shut you can pass your money or bank card through an open door.

Fill ‘Er Up – Don’t allow your car’s gas tank to get too low. If you park a car with a nearly empty tank and leave it overnight, the gas may begin to freeze, leaving you with an unusable car and very possibly an expensive repair bill. If possible, buy your gas at a place that offers Winter Gas which has an anti-freeze additive in it.

Warm It Up – It’s generally not a great idea to fire up and immediately drive away in a car that has been sitting for 18 hours in sub-zero temperatures. Turn the car on and spend a few minutes scraping windows and cleaning your floormats while you wait for the car to warm up. Your vehicle will thank you.

Slow Down – While many people don’t seem to realize this, it is smart to drive a bit slower when there is six inches of snow on the road than when the roads are clear. Stopping times increase and steering gets spotty. So slow down, take it easy, leave space and get off the phone.

Snow Angels – As a Reformed Christian I take offense at any sort of religious icon, especially when used as objects of worship or veneration. So you ought not to make snow angels. You might wake up the next morning to find you’ve got a yard full of Catholics worshipping venerating your creation.

Got some more tips? Feel free to post them in the forums.

  • A La Carte Collection cover image

    A La Carte (June 11)

    A La Carte: The blessing of constant curiosity / Church discipline in the digital age / Don’t be too easy to join / Body matters in Genesis / The local church is a sandbox / Seasons in a pastor’s life / and more.

  • Trusting Jesus in The Public Square 

    This week the blog is sponsored by Moody Publishers. Parents have a biblical responsibility to protect their children not only from physical harm but also from spiritual harm. It is entirely appropriate and right for a parent to wrestle with whether they want to allow their child to continue to have a friendship with a…

  • that First Sports Bet

    Young Man, Don’t Even Make that First Sports Bet

    It’s impossible to avoid the advertising and impossible to miss the claims. Sports are great, they say, but do you know what makes them even better? Adding a little wager. Sports are exciting, they say, but even more exciting when you’ve got a bit of money riding on them. So why not enjoy them all…

  • A La Carte Collection cover image

    A La Carte (June 10)

    A La Carte: Feminism’s patriarchs / Thank you, parents, for your Sunday faithfulness / Godly sorrow vs worldly sorrow / Being transformed from the inside out / What if everyone at your church was like you? / The gift and skill of praise in lament / Kindle deals / and more.

  • Not a Life of Ease

    It’s Not a Life of Ease

    You can’t read the New Testament and fail to understand that the Christian life was never meant to be a life of ease. Each of us will encounter adversity and adversaries, and each of us will have to wage war against our fearsome foes— the world, the flesh, and the devil. Then, each of us…

  • A La Carte Collection cover image

    Weekend A La Carte (June 8)

    A La Carte: Fighting for faith when doubts abound / The incredible blessing of my father’s final months / Why you can’t let yourself feel content / The means of doing much good / Bible translations are for people / Kindle deals / and more.