A lot of things can happen during the rainy season. Many typhoons and even low-pressure areas have already tested the lives of many Filipinos, including motorists. With that said, preparation for the possible occurrence of this natural disaster should also include cars. In fact, there are some tips and tricks on how you can maintain your vehicle during the rainy season. Once you consult and follow these practices, your car should be in good shape once the monsoon strikes.
Wash your car thoroughly
Some find it pointless to have their car washed during the rainy season, but it’s actually a must. When rainwater dries after the downpour, some acid or mineral deposits are left which could then damage or leave marks on its paint job. To avoid this, you should wash your car with some solvent-free cleaning products. If you happen to have the extra time, then apply wax too for an added layer of protection.
Clean your car’s windshield after the rain
Aside from your car’s paint, its windshield too can accumulate watermarks from the rain which could affect your forward visibility. That’s why it’s also important to thoroughly clean the windshield after the rain, as letting it dry off could possibly leave mineral residue that can attract dirt and affect your vision while driving.
Properly maintain your windshield wipers
Ideally, windshield wipers should be replaced every year. Each wiper blade faces wear and tear over time even when not in use, making them dry, cracked, and brittle. Once that happens, the water on your windshield will not be wiped properly, plus, it could also leave streaks that could affect your visibility. When it’s already due for replacement, make sure that the wiper blades you’ll be purchasing will have the right length and connector clips.
Inspect your tires regularly
Driving on wet roads can lead to hydroplaning especially if your car’s tires are not well maintained. When tires get worn out, there is a chance that your vehicle could lose its control and even spin while driving in the rain, given that the grooves in your tires cannot channel enough water away from the contact patch. With that, it’s important to inspect your tires regularly in order to safely drive your car during the rainy season.
Check your car’s battery
Due to the corrosion caused by humidity and potential droplets splashing about during the rainy season, a car battery’s 5-year lifespan could possibly be shortened from 1 to 2 years. Some signs of battery power shortage include having the difficulty in starting your car or not being able to turn on the lights. That said, it’s better to have it replaced immediately in order for you to avoid getting stranded in the middle of a storm.
See if there are any leaks
Some parts of the car including the rubber seal around your car doors, windows, trunk, and many other components could possibly wear off and come loose over time. That’s why you should clean it from time to time and check if there are any signs of leaks inside your car.
Check your braking system
Your car’s braking system should be checked more often during the rainy season in order to avoid any risky situations while driving. Check the pads and rotors. Make sure that there’s no squeaking or metallic sounds whenever you brake. Brakes become less effective when wet, that said, you should at least try drying your brakes if you find yourself driving in the rain or through a flood. In order to do that, first, find a safe place and then feather your car’s brakes a few times in order to ensure its responsiveness on the road. Do not slam your brakes, as you could cause a possible rear-end collision with the passenger behind you.
Moreover, you should also check the brake fluid as it absorbs moisture during rainy days. This is a must as it needs to stay in good shape, therefore, allowing your braking system to handle tricky situations like steep inclines and excessive braking.
Test the headlights and taillights if they are working properly
Last on the list is testing your car’s exterior lighting system. Make sure that your headlight, fog lamps, and even your taillights are functioning properly, as it shall serve as an essential feature when driving through a heavy downpour.
Also, consider refreshing the look of your car at the same time by buffing and polishing your headlights’ lenses. Either bring it to a professional or do it yourself. A clear lens will allow the light to pass through easier, giving you a brighter beam for when things go awry.