How to drive through flooded roads


Let’s face it, Indian roads can never be ready to take on the rains. Water logging is one of the most common things that most people in every part of the country have to face when it rains. Did you know that driving through a heavily water logged street could get your car’s engine seized? To make sure this doesn’t happen, here are a few tips to make sure your car doesn’t get stuck.

In a manual car

gear lever

Since most people drive manual cars, we thought we would start off with that.

Let’s begin with the most basic thing. If you see that there is a water logged road, slow down & downshift to the lowest possible gear (1st preferably). Maintain a steady pace through the flooded region & DO NOT upshift. Keeping the revs high reduces the chance of stalling your vehicle & also reduces chances of letting the exhaust take in water.

Second thing to keep in mind is that if you do have to come to a halt when you are in a water logged region, ensure that you shift into neutral and keep the engine revved. You could also keep the car in gear & have the clutch pressed. This will prevent water from entering through the exhaust system.

Third thing. If you do manage to stall your car in the water, DO NOT, i repeat DO NOT start your car if the water level is above that of your exhaust pipe. Trying to start the car with water above the exhaust pipe will result in the engine sucking in water which will end up costing you a lot. It is better to get the car pushed to an area where there is lesser water before trying to start her up.


In an automatic car

The idea is the same, but the technique is a little different.

So if you have a sport mode in the transmission or a manual mode, shift into it. This enables you to keep the car in the lowest possible gear while you are going through the water. Remember if you are driving in normal auto mode, the moment you lift off, your car will upshift & this could cause your car to bog down. Some old automatics have the option of 1,2,etc. Please select 1 then as this will keep your car in the first gear.

water 4

Like in a manual, if you have to come to a halt in the water, you need to keep revving. In a manual car that is easier. However in an automatic you will have to shift the lever into neutral and then revv. Also keep in mind that if you are revving & intend on moving after that, ensure that there is enough space in front as your car might jump ahead if you put the car into D while the engine is not at idle.

Though we wouldn’t advise this, if you decide you want to inch forward while you are in water, you will have no option but to left foot brake. Unless you left foot brake, you will not be able to keep the revvs high & you may end up letting water get in. In a long run, this will effect your transmission however. Hence we wouldn’t recommend you inching forward in traffic, rather wait till the road ahead clears & then clear the flooded area in one shot.

water 2

If you feel the water level is too high, turn around. There is no point in venturing into the unknown and damaging your car. These tips should help you deal with the great Indian monsoon that’s already hit many parts of the country.