Ohh, the monsoon has arrived but along with it comes many diseases and somewhere down the line, the doctors would be a happy lot. It would be more like a ration shop line outside a doctors clinic. Come to think of it, the summer vacations are yet to end and before hand, kids going to school would have a nice time skipping their school periods and stuff. However did you ever wonder that your car, which has served you faithfully all these years may need some looking into? Well, if you didn’t, then now is the right time for it. The roads become all the more full of slush and all those potholes would be choked with water and grime. Here are some Indiandrives tips on what all preventive measures you need to take care of before your car goes into an epileptic shock.
- First come the wipers of the car. It is the most neglected part of a car and people tend to think that it would work fine in any given season. However, the wipers need their fair share of attention in the monsoon. Just after every drive, cleaning the wipers would be of great help. Many a times the preluded summer causes some twigs or branches to be caught in the wiper blade section. This would cause the wipers to work with less efficiency to their performance. The blades of the wiper shouldn’t have cuts in them. If they do have it, then it would be advised to get them replaced at the earliest. If not done, they may hamper your vision in torrential rains by leaving swirl marks. Also carry stacks of newspaper with you. Cleaning a glass with newspapers ensures that no swirl marks are left. If you are of the paper conservationist types, then opt for tobacco powder. Rubbing tobacco on the windscreen doesn’t allow water droplets to form a patch and hence optimum visibility is maintained. Also another important point is to keep the washer fluid topped up always. It’s a great life saver equipment in the monsoons.
- Now comes the turn of the tyres. In a wet climate and especially in the starting few days, road going car tyres find it difficult to grip the road due to limited friction. This means that there are chances that your vehicle would be a bit imbalanced. Learn to check out the tread life left in your tyre. It should be sufficient enough and by sufficient, we mean about 2-3 mm. Ensure that the tyre pressure is maintained as recommended in the manual. Get the wheels aligned properly before torrential rains start.
- If you are the sort of careless drivers who ding their cars more often and care less about getting it repaired, then now is the right time to get it repaired. Scratches in the surface paint and stuff means that an ideal situation for rust to creep in. Do get this treated before your car becomes a rust scapegoat. Even though its raining, do ensure that you clean your car once in a week since the accumulated dust and grime would promote corrosion. Also keep the car covered with its parking cover and also make sure that it is tied down. It is often noticed that during rainy season, heavy winds tiptoe their way into the equation. The last thing you would want to see is your car cover blown away in the gale and your car being exposed to the elements. The tail pipe (s) of the car need to be treated to anti rust treatment since they are one of the first parts which would be caught in this crossfire.
- For the interiors, start with checking if all the lights are in working position. If you have a slight doubt that anything out there looks like it would give way, then make sure that you actually replace it before its too late. In the monsoon season, visibility is a key factor as far as the driving part is concerned. The tail lamps and the head lamps play an important part in this. After having done a satisfactory check of the functioning of the lights, now, it is the turn of a neglected part and that is the pedals of the car. Imagine you are going to drive your car and it has been raining incessantly. The moment you put your feet on the pedal, your feel slips because there is no grip in the pedals, then it would lead to a catastrophe. So replaced the pedals if they have already lost their grip. Water Drain Hole is a small plug which prevents the water from entering the car cabin. However since they rarely come into action, many would have been damaged or even loosened off. Do replace them as replacing them isn’t costly but replacing your upholstery would be.
- A car has rubber beadings and mounts near the door frame. Their main purpose is to prevent the rain water from coming in. Due to negligence, it happens many a times that the beadings would have either worn out or don’t fit properly. Do some “DIY” or Do It Yourself thing and get them fixed with a fevistick or take the car to an authorized service station so that they can replace the beadings for you and put in fresh ones. The beading is also instrumental in ensuring that no short circuits happen. The boot is more prone to rust during monsoons as often boot beadings give way faster than the door ones. Do have this checked. The water seeping inside the cabin means that there are chances of a short circuit happening.
- Do check the AC coils and related stuff to see that they are working properly. In a humid country like India, condensation happens rather fast in a closed atmosphere. This condensation result in the reduced visibility and thus accidents. In these times, the AC unit comes in handy. It will remove the condensation which happens on the windscreen and also on the side glass. Some cars come with heated outside rear view mirrors. The ORVMs have an electric wiring to them which makes sure that the driver has a good view of the vehicles behind him. Since the floor and upholstery start to smell after some time, have a car air freshner handy. The freshner should be of the attaching types which directly glue themselves to the AC vents. Avoid products like Ambipur since they contain liquid in them and this may cause allergy and a bit of suffocation feeling. Instead choose those air freshners which have a dry paper factor in them. The rear wiper or heater should also be functioning properly.
- If your car is facing the seasonal monsoon for the first time, then drive very slowly. The wheels need some time to find traction on a wet surface. Start keeping a very safe distance from the vehicle in front of you. During rainy season, even the brakes of a car have hard time controlling the speed, so distances naturally multiply. Brakes need to be checked into urgently before venturing out in the rains. If your car has ABS, then ensure that its working properly since it turns out to be a life saver in wet conditions. Aquaplaning often happens during monsoons and this means that your car would start slipping when you least expect it to. This occurs when the tyres are left with minimum traction. If you are about to cross a puddle, first and foremost, if possible, avoid crossing the puddle. In the rains, since water is logged everywhere, you would never know what is inside that puddle, whether it’s a manhole or actually something filled with slush. Drive cautiously and maintain a steady speed. Keep the car in a lower gear than you usually would. This is to be done so that the engine also assists the brakes in retarding the motion of the car. During monsoons, the extremes of the road face the problem of water logging, so during the monsoon season, as far as possible, drive through the center of the road but do keep one thing in mind. If the road you are driving through has got markings on it, then better avoid keeping the wheels on the marked sections. The marked sections use paint and hence they have less traction as compared to a tarred surface. If by any chance, water enters the exhaust, then don’t try to restart the car. This would cause more damage. Simply push the vehicle to the side of the road and call the manufacturer’s helpline number.
- On the highways, try and maintain a steady speed. Don’t try to do overtaking maneuvers unless you are cent percent sure that this maneuver can be done safely. If you are following a truck, then treat it as a hazard. Old trucks plying on our highways have a common tendency to stall without any warning. Plus the absence of functioning tail lamps and other hazard indicators mean that the chances of dinging one are very high. From a distance it is very hard to make out if the truck ahead is actually in motion or if it is stationary. If a tree branch remains dangled from the sides of the truck, it means that the truck has broke down and hence you have to find a way around it.