With the onset of the monsoon season in many of the cities, it becomes imperative that you take precautions for the same. No longer can you ride to feel the wind on your face, but have to peel your eyes to keep yourself safe and not slip into disaster.
Here are some tips for enjoying your rain rides:
1. Prepare Your Bike
It your motorcycle is in very good condition, rains surely can't dampen your riding spirit. Tyre care is an essential part as it grips to the road. It is recommended to have a soft compound tyre on the motorcycle, with enough tread left on it. The tyre tread level should be checked once in two weeks and if any signs of abnormal wear and tear are found, such as cracks, flat spots or bloats, the tyre needs to be replaced. Tread level is often the most ignored and can be the cause for accidents, hence tyre tread must be way above the legal limit for it to grip properly.
Chain Lube: Every motorcycle's chain needs to be lubricated well and frequently, especially during the monsoon, as water, muck and grit keep splashing onto the chain while it is running at high speeds.
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2. Choose a proper riding gear
Having your normal jacket and trousers might not be enough. If there’s a light drizzle, it probably will not be a problem, but when there’s consistent rain, water (usually cold) will seep through your clothes onto your body, and that is not fun! Getting wet, or at least humid, when riding is distracting and very uncomfortable. Choose a proper riding gear ( acket, gloves, rain boots) and an anti fog visor for helmet that ensures that you remain dry and comfortable. is also recommendede. Use of high visibility riding gear keeps you visible all the time. Make sure brakes, fuel and oil levels, lights are working fine.
3. Ride Slower
Watch the road. What used to be kind-of slippery is now too slippery. White lines on the roads will be covered in water. Since the surface offers less traction , and rains bring in a lot more than just water( oil spills) , always be on the lookout. Ride at a slow speed so that you have a little more control of your bike. When you need to brake, apply more rear brake than normal. If your front wheel starts sliding you’re done for, if your rear wheel slides you can easily correct. If you need to urgently apply your brakes, pump them so that you do not start aquaplaning.
Aquaplaning happens when there is so much water on the road that the tyres cannot guide it to the sides, which means that the tire no longer has contact with the surface of the road, and the bike rides, as it were, on water.
4. Be Aware of manholes and puddles
Watch out for puddles. Yes, it can be fun riding through one, but since the water hides the surface but you just don’t know what you are riding into. Can the puddle in fact be a 3 feet deep hole? Its better to be careful than sorry. Beware of open manholes during the monsoon. Peel your eyes for open manholes and broken pavements. Also it is a good idea to slow down at road intersections.
5. Stay Calm and composed
Relax when riding. Getting all cramped and bunched up is not good. First of all you will get tired quickly and it is dangerous. Relaxed riding position is much better. Being composed ensures that you take the right decision during emergencies without panicking. Do remember that if the storm gets heavy it is best to stop and take some rest.
Riding in rain can be so much fun if you follow basic safety rules. With a lot of greenery, waterfalls and beautiful weather, its surely the best time to ride!