The 10 Essential Items for Your Cubby-Hole

The Glove compartment used to be the place to store… driving gloves. However, fewer drivers use driving gloves and instead use the compartment to stash a number of items. We’ve come up with a list to highlight the essentials you need.

1. Important Documents: Vehicle registration, drivers license, insurance details etc are vital items which should be at the top of this list because you never know when you may need it.

2. Drivers/Owners manual: Your automobile is a machine, and machines do have a tendency to break down. Even if you think know your vehicle well enough, its imperative that you have your drivers manual on you, for troubleshooting instructions,  finding authorized service centres, information about maintaining your car, or simply to better understand the symbols on your dashboard. 

3. Digital Tyre Pressure Gauge: This is a new entrant, and may be a little difficult to find in Sri Lanka (buy online). However, it is a useful device to have in order to measure your tyre pressure on the go.

4. Rainwear/Umbrella: Given that Sri Lanka is prone to a lot of rain, this should seem like a no-brainer. When its raining hard, you’ll be glad to have packed a small umbrella to ensure that you stay dry.

5. Mobile Phone Charger: In these days, when we are heavily reliant on our phones, the last thing you want is to have a phone battery die when you need it the most. Having a mobile phone charger in your car is a must have item to ensure that you are connected at all times.

glove box, glove compartment
What do you keep in your glove compartment?

6. Spare pen and notebook: This becomes useful just in case you need to write a grocery list, or have to visit a few places on your daily commute. Furthermore, it can also be used to note down insurance information just in case you have a vehicle accident.

7. Wet Tissues (Sanitary Wipes) or a spare cloth: Useful for wiping away the dust from your dashboard. In addition, if you were to spill any food or drink in your vehicle, these are excellent for cleaning up a mess.

8. Flashlight: If you were to accidentally drop something important such as a phone, battery or document, having a spare flashlight will help you find it sooner.

9. Printed map: This may seem counterproductive with the advent of smartphones and Google Streetview in Sri Lanka. However if your smartphone or GPS device were to malfunction, you have the peace of mind knowing that you have a printed map ready, just in case.

10. Extra ‘Siri’ bags: If you are like most Sri Lankan’s, chances are that you will have all of your spare ‘siri’ bags in one place in your house. Make it a point to keep a few extras in your car just in case you have trash to throw away, be it in the form of a wrapper, plastic cup or other disposables.

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Disclaimer: The views shared in this blog are based on the macro economic conditions & industry status quo as per the time of publishing.

8 Ways to Drive in Wet Weather

December usually heralds the season of Christmas trees, families spending time together, numerous parties and last-minute dashes to buy presents. However, it also rains during this particular month. As a result, the roads in Sri Lanka become even more dangerous than they usually are. Nobody wants to get involved in a motor accident, so here are some tips to get to your destination safely.

1. Lights on… to a point: Using your lights allow drivers to increase visibility, and make you more visible to other motorists. Sometimes, you may need to use fog lights as per the situation. Use your best judgement, but please don’t put your lights too high, as it is a significant distraction to other drivers, and is a very dangerous thing to do as the driver may lose sight for a moment and lose control.

2. Pay attention: This means no phones or other distractions. Driving in Sri Lanka is hard enough, but with rain affected roads, the margin of error is even smaller. Make sure that you pay close attention to your surroundings and drive safe.

steering and drive carefully during wet weather
Image Credit: Bigotires

3. Slow and Steady: It’s normal that you want to get your destination quickly, but it’s always better to get there a little late than to not get there at all. On wet roads, make sure you put more braking distance as you need plenty of time to react to the slippery conditions. Besides, slow and steady always wins the race.

4. Use a light touch: Irrespective of whether you are making a turn, steering or hitting the brakes, make sure that you make controlled movements. If your driving is steady, your vehicle will also be steady.

5. To the Left, to the left: Since you’re driving slow (see Tip 3), move to far left and allow other vehicles to overtake you. Its annoying to have drivers who don’t know how to use lanes properly, much more so during slippery driving conditions.

hydroplaning, driving in floods, driving in rain, driving in wet weather
Image credit: Roaddriver

6. Beware of water: Seems obvious, but avoid water whenever you can. Driving through water can harm your engine and brakes. A good rule of thumb to observe: if the water level is higher than the bottom of your doors, don’t drive through. Worst case scenario, you may need to take another route, but that’s always better than having your vehicle get stuck as it pours outside.

7. Demist the front and back windscreen: It’s very simple, use your heater so that you have maximum visibility when you are on slippery roads.

8. If possible, leave more time for your journey: This will allow you to relax and drive slower, while allowing you to take account for potential traffic jams.

Any tips you would like to add to our list? Tell us in the comments section!

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Disclaimer: The views shared in this blog are based on the macro economic conditions & industry status quo as per the time of publishing.