Road Surface Warning System: My Car Does What

Temperature Warning

Alerts you when the outside temperature is detected to be at or below freezing, which can impact the conditions of roadways.

This recently introduced feature uses temperature readings and other information to help warn drivers when roads are or may become icy.

Beware Black Ice

Quick Guide

1

TURN ON CAR

Turn on car normally.

2

KNOW YOUR WARNING

Look to the dashboard for a warning that the temperature is below freezing.

3

ADJUST PLANS IF NEEDED

Choose to delay driving or change your mode of transportation if conditions are too dangerous for driving.

How it works

WHAT IT DOES

This feature warns drivers when the temperature is below freezing outside – which is an indicator that there may be ice on the roads – which will help drivers be on the lookout for slippery conditions.

THE TECHNOLOGY BEHIND IT

A thermometer works with your vehicle’s dashboard or infotainment system to warn you when the outside temperature drops below freezing (0 degrees Celsius or 32 degrees Fahrenheit). Most versions of temperature warnings don’t take into account the vehicle’s internal temperature, just the temperature outside (which is more relevant in whether there is ice on the grounds).

WHAT YOU NEED TO DO

If you receive a temperature warning, you should use this information as one of the many factors you should consider on whether it is safe to drive. Other factors to consider include what you already know about the weather between you and your driving destination and your car’s handling in snowy weather or on ice.
This warning should remind you of factors that could make it more dangerous to drive when combined with icy roads, such as driving at night or over bridges.

TIPS FOR USING

  • Even if you don’t get a temperature warning when turning on the car, consider the temperature and weather at your destination when deciding whether it’s safe to drive.
  • Sometimes, the temperature can go from above freezing to below freezing over a short distance. Temperature warnings can help identify those times.
  • It’s important to be generally aware of the weather outside before departing on a trip and to not rely exclusively on your temperature warning for information about potential driving conditions

Question & Answers

What else is this feature called?

You may also see this feature called road surface temperature warning in some cars.

Does this feature monitor the condition of the road directly beneath my vehicle while driving?

While today’s temperature warning and road surface warning features don’t manually scan the road to determine its condition, future versions of this feature may have these capabilities. Continue checking out MyCarDoesWhat.org to learn more!

What other roadway conditions does this feature warn me of besides ice?

Currently, temperature warning systems only alert you to the possibility that there may be ice on the roads.

Does the temperature warning feature mean there is black ice on the roads?

Black ice is formed by cold temperatures and moisture. While it may be below freezing outside, if roads don’t have adequate moisture to form ice, it isn’t likely that there is black ice on the roads.

However, black ice is very difficult to detect – even when driving on it – so if you’re driving a long distance, it’s not safe to assume that just because your current location doesn’t have black ice there isn’t black ice further along the road.

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