Can You Ride RC Cars On Snow?
RC cars and RC trucks have always been able to handle rough or unconventional terrain. Not only can you ride with them inside your home, but you can also use them outside on the grass, the gravel, or even a homemade dirt trail. But I while ago I was just thinking: how about snow? Can you ride RC cars on a snowy day? and since I haven’t used my cars in that kind of situation, I decided to do some research to see if you can do that.
And the answer is that yes, you can ride your RC car on the snow, as long as it has enough ground clearance to travel through it. Also, the RC car must also be waterproof in order to avoid damaging the car’s internals. 4×4 on the car is obviously going to be useful too. Not all cars will be able to be used in the snow though, like for example an on-road RC car, but other than that, you won’t have any issues.
Even if you could use your car on the snow, it might not have the performance you are looking for, especially if the car in question is not a 4×4 model. Snow is obviously going to affect traction, and if your car somehow isn’t waterproof you are going to have issues with that too. But when it comes to the traction, there are a few ways to fix that so that you can ride in the snow without issues. Check below to see how you can do that.
Riding RC Cars On Snow: Is It Possible?
Like I said above, riding RC cars on the snow is definitely possible, as long as your car of choice has an inch or two of ground clearance. Also, make sure that your RC car is waterproof before riding on the snow. Riding on the snow means that your RC car is going to get wet, and that might be an issue for the car’s electronics inside.
There’s also another factor that might affect your car’s ability to ride on low temperatures, and that is starting the nitro engine. If you haven’t ridden on snow yet, let me tell you that you might have a hard time starting the car up. This is because of several reasons.
The first one is that the glow plugs might not produce as much heat because of the ambient temperature. This might seem absurd, but it actually has been a documented problem in several RC car models. If your RC car has a colder glow plug than normal, it might have problems starting up the car on the first place.
If you do not know the temperature of the glow plug in your car, then It might be wise to visit an RC car forum or calling the car’s manufacturer so that you can have an idea.
Another reason why an RC car might not start on cold or snowy weather is that you might be running the engine too lean. Running too lean means that there is too much air and not enough fuel in the engine. And likewise, running rich refers to the RC car having too much fuel and not enough air in the mix. Running too lean will definitely affect the engine’s ability to start, and so it’s a good idea to run a little bit more rich than normal. NOTE: to learn about running rich and running lean, check this article out.
Running rich has the added advantage of producing more heat than normal, which will ensure that the engine doesn’t misfire after being turned on. It also has the added benefit of warming up the brittle plastics that can easily break on a cold winter.
Something else that could affect your car’s ability to ride on the snow or on low temperatures is the batteries. It’s possible that your electric RC car might not run in the winter because it’s so cold outside. If this is the case and your car doesn’t produce as much power as you might want, dying batteries might be the culprit, especially if you are using the stock batteries that came with the car. The same thing could be said about the transmitter.
Can Riding On The Snow Damage Your RC Car?
I talked about this briefly in the above paragraph, and the answer is yes, you technically could damage your RC car in several ways.
As I said above, if the car’s components aren’t waterproof, then you are going to have issues riding on the snow. One of the components that could malfunction because of water is the steering servo. Many steering servos are not waterproof, and if even 1 drop of water gets into them, you are probably going to have to replace them with something new.
Another part of the RC car that tends not to be waterproof is the circuit board, especially if you have an older RC car. That’s why it’s a good idea to check the manual of your car to make sure that everything inside is waterproof. And if your car circuit board doesn’t have any protection against water, then let me tell you that there are some folks that actually tape parts of the board to protect it.
Another way that you can damage your car by riding it in the snow is by gear overheating. And what I mean by that is that if your car doesn’t have the necessary traction, it might just spin its tires that might mean trouble for the gearing inside if done for extended periods of time.
Best RC Cars For Snowy Terrain
As you probably know, there are several models that will do better than the rest in the snow. If your car doesn’t have the ground clearance necessary to ride on snow, or if it’s not waterproof, then it might be wise to just buy one of the models below.
Traxxas Stampede 4×4
When it comes to the best RC cars for snowy terrain, the Traxxas Stampede is one of your best choices. This electric model has everything that you should be looking for if you want to ride in the snow.
The first main pro of this model is the fact that it’s completely waterproof. This means that you won’t have to worry about parts getting wet inside, because even if it did, nothing bad would happen.
This model is also electric which means that you don’t need to worry about gas motors not starting and such. Buying Traxxas is also a great choice for newbies because their customer service is so great.
Arrma Senton 4X4
In the RC car world, few brands are as respected as Arrma, with their products being known for providing very reliable toys without being stupidly expensive. The Senton is one of Arrma’s entry-level trucks, with their 4X4 model being recommended for snow use.
And talking about that, the 4X4 system on this baby will be more than enough for snowy terrain. It does a good job of keeping traction when riding on snow, even more so than the Stampede above I would say. This combined with the fact that this model is completely waterproof makes this a great choice for snow day use.
Just keep in mind that this model is a little bit more expensive than the Traxxas above, plus its a more enthusiast-oriented model with less aftermarket support. Still, a great choice.
TMAX Classic 4X4 Nitro
This is a hell of an RC car for serious enthusiasts. It’s also one of the very best models for riding on snow, with its 4×4 system doing a great job not only on the snow but also with the acceleration. And not only does the 4×4 deserve praise, but the shocks are also very high-quality, which means that you can use this on not only the snow but also on rocky and uneven terrain.
However, this truck has 1 disadvantage: it’s super expensive. We are talking about more than 300 dollars, which not everybody will be able to pay, but if you have the money to pay that, then you will be getting a very capable RC truck.
ECX Torment 4X4 Electric
A popular choice for those looking for an entry level truck, this model could be a great choice for snow terrain. One of the first things that differentiate this model from the others on this list is what you get for the price.
Not only is this cheaper than most cars on this article, but it offers a surprising amount of features what you wouldn’t find on other cars on this price point. While it’s not as cheap as the Dunoko below, it’s significantly more reliable.
Dunoko Pro 4X4
The Dunoko pro is a great alternative to the models above, especially if you are on a budget. this electric model is classified as a monster truck, and it shows in the ground clearance. simply, you are not going to have trouble maneuvering the truck in the snow, and the stock tires do a good job of making sure the truck never loses its grip.
This model isn’t as durable as the ones above, plus it’s not completely waterproof. Only buy this if you are on a budget.