Monsoon is here. It’s time to be well prepared and exercise a few precautions for yourself, your family and your car.
While it is advisable to keep your vehicles prepared well in advance of the onset of monsoon, it is never too late.
Bear in mind that driving in wet weather conditions is much different than in dry weather. Always be on full alert and maneuver your car cautiously when its wet out there. Roads tend to be wet and slippery especially after a heavy downpour. The water on the roads is mixed with dirt. Oil leak from vehicles on to the road is also retained causing slippery surfaces.
After a heavy rain, a layer of water builds between the rubber tyres of the vehicle and the road surface, leading to loss of traction thus preventing the vehicle from responding to control inputs such as steering, braking or accelerating (read more about hydroplaning).
To prevent your car from skidding, CarZ suggests you adopt certain techniques and car maintenance tips that will ensure that you are in perfect control while driving on wet roads. These tips will enhance your safety this monsoon:
- Do not drive at high speeds on a wet road. Driving at a lower speeds provides you with greater stability.
- Avoid abrupt jerky movements while braking, accelerating or turning around a corner.
- Maintain adequate distance between the vehicles in front of you. If by any chance, you need to brake suddenly, you will have sufficient distance between your car and the one in front of you before coming to a halt.
- Ensure that the headlights, tail lamps, turn signal lights, brake lights are all in good working condition.
- Always keep your headlights on so that you are visible to the surrounding vehicles especially during blinding rain or extremely dark and gloomy weather.
- Ensure to get a full electrical system check-up. The wires need to be insulated and weak ones attended to.
- Ensure the front and rear Wipers on the cars are in good working condition.
- Skidding on wet roads leads to innumerable road accidents each year. In most occasions it has been reported that poor quality tyres or poorly maintained tyres were responsible in addition to the driver’s carelessness. So, invest in top quality tyres that are specifically adapted to both dry as well as wet and slippery conditions.
- Maintain your tyres regularly: correct tyre inflation, whether they have become bald and worn out so that your tyres perform with maximum efficiency on wet roads providing you with greater control and confidence.
- Avoid physical and mental distractions while driving on wet roads. Remain alert!
- Stay calm and dont panic in case of a spin. First, lightly apply the brakes steering in the direction of the skid, push down the clutch and let the car slow down on its own.
Some other car maintenance tips appropriate for the rainy season:
- Have your car waxed regularly to prevent damage to paint & body by acid rain.
[Acid rain contains a variety of acids, including carbonic, nitric, and sulfuric acid. These acids, are in large, produced by pollution problems stemming from carbon monoxide emmissions and industrial fallout containing concentrated amounts of sulphur, just to name a couple. Once rain water evaporates, so do the nitric and carbonic acids. Sulfuric acid, however, does not evaporate. The remaining concentrated solid sulfuric acid actually etches or mars the painted surface of the vehicle. These marks appear as dull white spots on the vehicle’s surface once the rain water has evaporated.
You can help prevent acid rain spotting by taking the necessary steps and have your vehicle’s paint job thoroughly compounded and waxed at least twice a year. This provides a good clean, slick surface that will help prevent those harmful chemicals from adhering to the vechicle’s painted surface. A wax or sealant will provide a protective barrier against the elements. Derived from: http://www.nationaldetail.com/tips/jan.html]
- Get an anti-rust coating for the under body of your car.
- Invest in regular car washes (exterior & under body).
[Every day cars are subjected to sun, salt from the sea, grease and grime from the road, acid rain, smog, tree sap, dead bugs, and worst of all, the acidic compound of bird droppings. All of these eat away at a car’s metal and chrome. They dull the paint. They corrode and cause rust under the carriage, in the wheel wells, even under the hood. You may not see it right away, but over time they will contribute to the decay of your car’s exterior, ultimately diminishing its resale value.]
- Clean, dis-infect your upholstery, carpets and interiors to keep it free from mold. Since mold and bacteria isn’t often visible, you and your family could be exposed to unhygenic conditions every day, unless the interiors are dis-infected regularly.
- Keep the interiors clean.