Rainy Weather Car Maintenance & Safety Tips

Driving in any type of severe weather can significantly increase your risk and potential for a dangerous situation for you, your family and other drivers. Severe weather demands your undivided attention, so be sure to reduce any possible distractions by turning the radio down or turning off the ringer to your phone. For many people, driving in rain produces anxiety, so adjust your thinking. When conditions are less than ideal, stay alert and focused on what’s going on around you.

Turn on those headlights. It’s the law in all states to turn on headlights when visibility is low, and many states also require having the headlights on when the windshield wipers are in use. Well-working wipers and relatively new (not threadbare) tires also are must-haves when driving in rain. Headlights, brake lights, and turn signal indicators are all crucial for safety. If any lights are not working on your vehicle, contact Southwest Autowerks today!

Beware of hydroplaning. That’s the technical term for what occurs when your tires are getting more traction on the layer of water on the road than on the road itself—the result is that your car begins to slide uncontrollably. It’s easy enough to hydroplane: All you need is one-twelfth of an inch of rain on the road and a speed of more than 35 miles per hour.  Turn off cruise control. You might think cruise control will help you stay at one steady speed, but if you hydroplane while you’re using cruise control, your car will actually go faster.

Slow down. BMWs are typically high-performing vehicles; however, speed limit signs are designed for ideal conditions and that means driving when you have good visibility and little traffic. When it’s raining, let up on the accelerator and allow more time to get to your destination. If your brakes make noise, or if they have not been checked in a while, call Southwest Autowerks for next steps.