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Winter driving from Melbourne to Canberra?

By Tray 20 May 2011 26

Hi everyone, I’ll be driving up to Canberra for the first time and was hoping to receive some general advice for safety.

It appears that the weather is unusually cold this winter with snow. Would the drive up (through Hume) involved snow or ice sleet?

Also, should I be particularly concerned with antifreeze considering it’s sub-zero?

Thanks as I’m completely new to long-distance cold weather driving.

What’s Your opinion?


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26 Responses to
Winter driving from Melbourne to Canberra?
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Mysteryman 12:17 pm 23 May 11

With a decent car you won’t even need to stop for fuel. It does get boring though, so stop as often as is necessary to stay alert.

Captain RAAF 11:03 am 23 May 11

astrojax said :

a sto at the holbrook bakery for pies is also de rigeur which you can then take up to the park with the submarine and scoff. they’re brilliant. or take a side trip off the highway before the border and swing into rutherglen for even better pies; and if you’ve time, a tipple, too…

Enjoy the pies while you can guys, once Holbrook is by-passed, that pie shop is as dead as a dodo!

If they were smart, they’d be pushing for a shop on the freeway in a rest area.

damien haas 10:09 am 23 May 11

Watson said :

qbngeek said :

Most good radiator coolants include an antifreeze in them, but you cna add it if you are not sure. It won’t be needed on the highway but may be required if your car will be in Canberra overnight. I have had to rescue two friends now who moved down here and never put antifreeze in the car. Their water pumps then crapped themselves because the water in them was frozen and the car will also overheat.

I used to drive a 20+ yo Subaru and never, ever used anti-freeze or even coolant. Just filled up the radiator with water and never had a problem in winter.

If your car engine has alloy, aluminim and cast iron parts, then use coolant not straight water. If you are going to be parking outside in Canberra over winter, also use cooolant and not straight water. Topping up with water from time to time probably wont harm the engine, but very few modern engines are designed to be cooled by straight water.

Watson 9:58 am 23 May 11

qbngeek said :

Most good radiator coolants include an antifreeze in them, but you cna add it if you are not sure. It won’t be needed on the highway but may be required if your car will be in Canberra overnight. I have had to rescue two friends now who moved down here and never put antifreeze in the car. Their water pumps then crapped themselves because the water in them was frozen and the car will also overheat.

I used to drive a 20+ yo Subaru and never, ever used anti-freeze or even coolant. Just filled up the radiator with water and never had a problem in winter.

JC 9:16 am 21 May 11

damien haas said :

You will be sitting on 110KMH for about 8 hours, if your car cant do it – dont attempt the journey.

Melbourne is about 640km from Canberra, so sitting at 110km/h it would take about 6 hours of actual driving. Of course time needs to be added for breaks and more than likley 1 refuel.

JC 9:13 am 21 May 11

bd84 said :

Do you think Switzerland is situated somewhere between Melbourne and Canberra or something? The only place it really snows in this country is on very high mountains, none of which are at all close to the road from Melbourne…

All you need to do is to get in the car, join the Hume Freeway/Highway and drive. Stopping at one of the half dozen maccas/fuel stops or somewhere like Albury (about half way) would be a good idea to prevent yourself falling asleep.

Was thinking the same, Canberra sure the shit ain’t in Scandinavia or Switzerland where one would have to really worry about winter driving conditions.

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