How Does Hydroplaning Work In Tires?

Tires lose grip on the road as move across a thin layer of liquid that’s on front of the pavement whenever a vehicle hydroplanes. The ability of a driver to steer and brake is significantly reduced by hydroplaning.

lessen the likelihood of aquaplaning

  • Verify the tire pressure on each of the four regularly.
  • Keep the tread at the minimum legal depth of 1.6mm.
  • Reduce your speed and increase your braking range from other vehicles if it is raining while you are driving.

What Do Hydroplanes Cause?

Road conditions, speed of the car, tread depth, plus vehicle weight all contribute to hydroplaning. Let’s examine these four elements in more detail.

1. Road Conditions

The risk of hydroplaning develops as water depth over a road surface rises to more than 1/10th of a single inch. The amount of rainfall, the type of roadway surface, and the drainage situation all play a significant part in creating the ideal conditions for hydroplaning. In essence, the likelihood that a vehicle will hydroplane increases with the depth of the standing water.

2. Automotive Speed

The space between a tire’s groove and its road surface needs time to dry out. There is less time for something to occur at a faster pace. According to the level of tread and wheel design, the quantity of moisture on the roadway, and other circumstances, hydroplaning can occur at velocities as little as 35 mph.

3. Tread Depth

The tread depth of a tire is one of the most important characteristics among all those that cause hydroplaning (or help you avoid it). To guarantee safe driving on slick roads, worn tires must be replaced as quickly as possible. Once the tread on your tire has deteriorated to a depth of 2/32nd of one inch or fewer hours, even the best tires on the marketplace won’t provide much protection from hydroplaning.

4. Automobile Weight

The heavier vehicle has an advantage in preventing hydroplaning when two vehicles with the same size and type of tire are compared because it requires more force to push water out from beneath the tire.

Hydroplaning: How Dangerous Is It?

One of the numerous major risks for drivers is hydroplaning. It could result in a motorist losing control of their car and having an accident.

In the United States, 46% of rain causes weather-related collisions, 70% of which occur on wet ground. Even worse, rinse pavement is to blame for 78 percent of weather-related collision injuries as well as 76% of weather-related accident fatalities.

What Must I Do If My Car is Hydroplaning/Aquaplaning?

If your car starts to hydroplane, consider these four suggestions. 

  • Try not to panic and maintain your composure. The situation will get worse if you overreact.
  • Don’t hit the brakes hard. Instead, let the gas pedal rest, and allow your vehicle to slow considerably. If necessary, and if your car has anti-lock brakes, you can use them to help your tires regain traction by lightly using the brakes.
  • Hold the wheel firmly in place. While hydroplaning, excessive steering wheel movement could make your automobile lose more traction and spin out of control.
  • After you’ve taken control of the vehicle, avoid coming to a complete halt. Be sure to pull safely onto the shoulder or off the road if you require a moment to collect your ideas. Keep in mind that approaching drivers may also be experiencing hydroplaning.

How Can Hydroplaning Be Prevented?

Despite what might not seem conceivable, there are many things you can take to prevent hydroplaning. Here are some suggestions.

1. Speed up

If you encounter standing water on rainy roads, reduce your speed by a minimum of 5 to 10 mph.

2. Avoid using cruise control over wet roads

Rely on your hands instead so you can pay close attention to the road.

3. Avoid puddles and other areas of standing water

Avoid if at all possible driving across any regions with standing water.

4. Make the appropriate turn

If your automobile is sliding, you might be tempted to turn the wheel in the other direction. But that’s not the ideal action to take. As an alternative, turn the wheel in the direction of your slide.

5. Examine your tires

Make sure your tires’ tread depth is at least every thirty days to ensure that they are at least 2/32nd of a single inch. You might have heard about a quick and simple method for determining tread depth, which involves inserting a penny with Abe Lincoln’s head toward the groove’s base into one of the tire’s grooves. The tread is at or below 2/32nd of an inch, and the tire needs to be replaced if it doesn’t cover even a little portion of Lincoln’s head.

6. Follow the vehicles ahead of you

Try to follow the tracks that vehicles ahead of you have left on a slick road. Those tracks indicate that part of the water on the roadway has already been spread out.

7. Keep a secure distance

In the rain, stopping distances significantly lengthen even without hydroplaning. To account for this, from the customary 2 or 3 mere seconds over 3 or 4 seconds and more, extend the time that follows.

8. Inflate your tires as directed

Your risk of hydroplaning can rise if your tires are underinflated or overinflated. Check and correct the inflation of your tires on a regular basis, to the specifications recommended by the manufacturer of your car.

9. Get routine tire rotation and balancing

Your tires’ tread life can be extended by rotating your tires. A rotation should normally be performed every 5,000 miles. Tire balancing has a number of advantages, including reducing tread wear. Tire balance is typically advised after 5K to 6K miles.

Tires Made To Reduce Aquaplaning

Because tires give a performance in line with a vehicle’s requirements and the owner’s objectives, tire tread patterns differ widely. Examples comprise:

Touring tires have tread patterns with extra characteristics called slots and sipes to help give traction in slippery and icy conditions. These tires provide an emphasis on ride comfort, low noise levels, and all-season traction.

Performance tires come in “Summer” and “All-Season” variations, with the latter emphasizing optimal control when cornering, accelerating, and stopping. Although both tires prevent hydroplaning, only the All-Season versions are usable in below-freezing cold. 

Best Tires With Hydroplaning Resistance


Although hydroplaning can be frightening for drivers, remember that if you are ready (including installing the proper tires) and practice defensive driving skills, you and your car can survive the incident without any damage. To find out more about tires that can prevent hydroplaning, contact a Bridgestone tire dealer in your area.

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