5 Rainy Day Driving Tips You Should Know
Learning how to drive can be thrilling. Whether you’re sixteen and getting your license for the first time, or whether you’re an older individual who feels like now is the time to become a vehicle owner, this will open up all sorts of exciting new horizons. It’s so convenient to be a licensed driver and to know that you can legally hit the road any time you like.
Some driving situations can be more than a little intimidating, though. For instance, maybe you’re not that comfortable driving in the rain yet. Rainy day driving is a bit different than driving when the weather is perfect, so let’s look at some tips for these conditions that should help you.
Drive Slower than You Usually Would
The first rainy day driving tip you should know is that you’re a lot less likely to hit another vehicle or anything else if you drive slower than you usually would. Sensible drivers understand that driving slower when it’s raining is a smart move. If you drive the speed limit, or even faster, when it is pouring down rain, you’re asking to get in an accident.
If that happens, it’s probably going to be a big hassle for you. You might get into a situation where the at-fault driver’s insurance won’t pay for the damages, in which case, you’ll probably have to hire an attorney and pursue the matter in court. That will definitely take up your time and energy, and no one wants that.
You don’t need to go five miles per hour in a 35 zone when it’s raining, but driving five miles under the speed limit is standard. The harder it’s raining, and the worse the visibility is, the slower you should go. You’ll get to where you’re going a bit later, but you’ll arrive alive and unharmed.
Avoid Taking the Highway When You Can
If you are not the most experienced driver, you might choose to avoid the highway when it’s raining hard. If you’re on the highway, you’re traveling at higher speeds than you would be if you were sticking to local roads.
In some circumstances, you may feel like you have to take the highway, even if it’s raining. Maybe you’re late for work, and local roads will take too long.
If at all possible, though, sticking to local roads when doing some rainy-day driving is the best and safest move. If you do get in an accident, at least it will happen when you’re traveling at a lower rate of speed.
Make Sure to Put Your Lights On
You should also always have your lights on when you drive in the rain. If you don’t have them on, other cars will not be able to see you as well, especially if it’s pouring hard at that moment.
It might surprise you how poorly you can see in the rain when you’re driving. Even if you’re very close to an object, such as a cyclist, pedestrian, or vehicle in front of you, it might be difficult for you to spot it.
When you drive in the rain with your lights on, it announces to other cars, pedestrians, and so forth that you’re there, and they need to pay attention to you. If you drive without your lights in these conditions, people can’t see you as well, and you can’t see what’s ahead of you either.
Use Your Windshield Wipers
You shouldn’t forget to use your windshield wipers when it’s raining. That’s what they’re for, and they can help with visibility in the pouring rain.
You can use the intermittent wiper function or the faster ones, depending on how hard it’s raining. Most vehicles have three wiper speeds, so use the appropriate one. If you try to drive in a monsoon, you’ll use the wiper speed intended for the most intense weather.
You should also maintain your windshield wipers. They usually last a couple of years with regular use, so test them frequently to make sure they’re still doing the job.
If You Don’t Have to Drive in the Rain, Don’t Do It
Even if you’re very cautious, it’s easier to get in an accident in the rain than it would be in nice weather. You might avoid that accident by simply not driving if it’s raining.
Consider how badly you need to get to wherever it is you’re going. If you can put off the trip, you may be better off doing so.