Car Talk

What Can Cause a Vehicle to Skid? Causes and Prevention

Avatar Adie Tinkle -

Skidding on a road can be scary and dangerous at the same time. Not only can It cause damage to your vehicle, but it can also put your life in danger. When you drive on the road, friction is created that ensures smooth and steady driving. The disturbance in this friction can make your vehicle skid. But what can cause a vehicle to skid?

A vehicle does not skid on dry surfaces, and it can only skid on slippery roads, such as during wet and icy conditions. Moreover, the condition of the vehicle’s tire, breaking habits, driving speed, and other potential mechanical issues can also contribute to this hazard. 

Let’s discuss these reasons and the steps you can take to avoid skidding. 

What can Cause a Vehicle to Skid?

Here are some of the prime reasons why your vehicle skids on the road 

Wet Road and Icy Condition 

Wet road because of water or snow is one of the most common causes of road skidding. After rainfall, the roads are left wet. This water can build up on the road surface, making it very difficult for the tire to have a grip on the road. The same goes for icy conditions. Because of snow, the lack of friction on the road can cause the tires to slip. Therefore, when driving on such a road, you must take extra caution. To stay in control of your vehicle, drive slowly and maintain a large distance between you and the vehicle in front of you.


Speeding on the roads is a significant cause of skidding. Traveling at a higher speed than allowed legally can make it difficult for the driver to control it. It can be even more hazardous in a wet or icy condition. Therefore, it is crucial for drivers to always obey speed limits and reduce their speed in case of severe weather conditions. 

Taking Turns Quickly 

It is easy for a vehicle to lose control and skid when taking a turn, especially if it is moving quickly. It is important for you to slow down when taking a turn. Applying brakes allows you to turn at the most appropriate speed. If your car is still losing its grip when turning, you can prevent it by applying pressure on your clutch and turning your steering wheel in the direction of the skid. Doing this will help you gain control over your vehicle. 

Worn Tires 

Another common cause of skidding is worn and bald tires. Worn-out tires or those with worn treads are not visible and cannot grip the road properly. Poor tire condition makes a vehicle prone to skidding. Drivers must regularly check their tires for wear and replace them when necessary. 

Mechanical Issues

A mechanical issue with a vehicle’s braking system, suspension, and steering system are also common causes of skidding. If you notice any unusual vibration or noise when driving, get your vehicle inspected by a mechanic as soon as possible. 

New Technology 

In the newer models, modern technology is installed that assists in preventing skidding from happening. 

Some of the prime features include: 

  • ABS (Anti-Lock Braking System) helps reduce the risk of skidding, which occurs as a result of harsh or excessive braking. 
  • Traction control helps skidding that occurs because of excessive acceleration. 

Understanding the Ways to Prevent Skidding

Now that you have the answer to “what can cause a vehicle to skid,” it is time to know some ways to help you prevent the car from skidding. 

Slow Down Your Vehicle 

Stay calm in such a scenario, as losing your composure can be more dangerous. Speeding up your vehicle increases the chances of a car skid. So, the best move for you is to slow down. 

Do Not Play With the Accelerator

Playing with an accelerator, especially when you are dealing with a wet road or worn tires can be very dangerous. Therefore, remove your foot from the accelerator, but do that slowly. Otherwise, you will lose control over your vehicle. 


Car skids can be dangerous, and one must be ready to handle such situations wisely. Keeping your speed limit and staying calm is a good way to act during such as scene. Build your control on the steering wheel, and do not gas up your vehicle when the car skid happens. Moreover, every car owner should know what makes their car skid so they can handle this situation more wisely. 

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