The rainy season in the Philippines is a monster. The traffic situation doubles in intensity, and so does the frustration in Philippine commuters. Just recently, my car’s hazard lights started blinking on their own, as if they were possessed. At one point, I even saw the instrument cluster on! After a visit to the electrician, we determined that it the electronics got wet. The car is still under observation.
This incident made more aware about the special driving conditions that the rainy season brings. Here are some tips to keep your car in tip-top shape against the typhoons and the monsoons.
First, make sure your tires are in great condition! I cannot stress how important this is as they are the car’s only contact points with the road (unless you are a serial low rider). Bad tires handle hydroplaning or skidding on water badly. Make sure your tread life is good, i.e. the tires are still thick and tire wear is minimal. Keep your tire pressure within the optimum range. This will ensure maximum control in steering and in braking.
Second, plan your trips ahead of time. Know the areas that are frequently flooded and avoid these. Use traffic mobile apps to your advantage.
Third, Make sure your exterior lights are in top shape. Keep the light covers free from fog and make sure they are airtight so that moisture can’t seep in. Make sure your bulbs are still strong and have no issues with connection. Avoid using your hazards when driving fast in low visibility situations. Hazards may confuse fellow motorists if you plan to switch lanes.
Next, waterproof the interior and engine components of your car. Again, the probable cause of my “possessed” hazard lights issue was wet electronics. Make sure that your weatherstripping is glued tightly to the car body. Never open your hood in the rain. Water in the fuse box, in the air flow sensor, and in the code reader input can spell nightmares for your car.
Frequently check your car battery, starter, and idle control components. The last thing you want in a thunderstorm in the middle of EDSA is for your car to stall and not start. Make sure that your battery has the optimum voltage, and that your idle RPMs are not erratic.
Have an emergency kit handy. You’ll never know when you’ll need to stop your car by the road or if your engine dies somehow. Include the following:
External gadget battery (power bank)
Drinking water (can double as engine coolant if distilled)
These are the essentials to keeping you and your car safe in this climate. Let us know how these tips have helped you. We at Acom Trading wish you a blessed and safe rainy season!
Article by Josh Jimenez
Photo from Pixabay