Surely if you’ve ever driven in the rain, you will have noticed how your car loses stability and grip due to aquaplaning. This phenomenon causes the car to lose control, and once hydroplaning has started, nothing can stop it. It is one of the main causes of accidents on rainy days or where there are adverse weather conditions. But what is aquaplaning and how can we avoid it?
Aquaplaning or hydroplaning is a physical phenomenon that causes the wheels on your car to lose contact with the road. This dangerous effect occurs due to an accumulation of water in front of the tyres. The tyre’s responsiveness when coming into contact with the layer of water has three stages depending on the vehicle’s speed:
To avoid the risk of aquaplaning we recommend that you take the following tips into account.
Sharp changes in speed are your worst enemy. Drive smoothly and moderately on rainy days. This will help you to avoid aquaplaning. Remember that even a milimetre of water is able to lift up your car, and sometimes when it is not raining, there can be water on the tarmac. That’s why, when it is raining or the tarmac is wet, we recommend you reduce your speed.
As we have explained, aquaplaning causes instability when steering your car. At this point, it is important to keep calm and not make sharp turns with the wheels; it is better to keep it still and steady. If you are on a bend, turn the wheel just enough to take it.
Knowing when you need to change the tyres on your vehicle and how to maintain them properly has a decisive impact on your safety. Therefore, you should perform the following checks:
Therefore, remember that the direct consequences of aquaplaning are losing control of the vehicle and increasing the braking distance. To avoid it don’t forget to stick to a steady and moderate speed, without turning the wheel. Also, when you go to put petrol in, check the pressure and wear on the tyres.