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So I was on the way home the other day in only my second rainstorm since purchasing my Elise and I noticed a sort of light feeling and realized I was hydroplaning. I had hydroplaned before in the first rainstorm but figured it was just because there was a LOT of water on the ground and I had slightly worn tires.

Well now I have really worn tires (which new ones are going on soon) but it wasnt really raining all that hard....the worst part is...i was only going 45. But it scared the crap out of me.

Is this just because the car is so light? or do my tires really suck THAT BAD!?
 

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Well now I have really worn tires (which new ones are going on soon) but it wasnt really raining all that hard.

sometimes light rain is worst because its just enough to wet the roads and lift that grease to the surface making it even more slick than a heavier rain which could wash the road grease/grime away.
 

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sometimes light rain is worst because its just enough to wet the roads and lift that grease to the surface making it even more slick than a heavier rain which could wash the road grease/grime away.
+1
Talk with any motorcycle rider - light rain after an extended dry period can make for very slick roads.
 

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yeah I hydroplaned and hit a curb in light light rain. Tires were pretty good, did not expect it at all.
 

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+1
Talk with any motorcycle rider - light rain after an extended dry period can make for very slick roads.
yep. I found that out the way most other motorcyclists do.. on the ground a week after i bought my first motorcycle.

on the subject of the lotus it does exhibit hydroplaning issues that i would consider worse than an average car. I had the rear come loose under acceleraration in a storm the first year I had the car and it was a bit disconcerting because it didnt feel like it should have happened (I wasnt going to fast for conditions nor was I accelerating aggressively).
 

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You are hydroplaning at 45 mph?
That must have been a huge puddle...Even with worn tires :shrug:

I had the Elise out at the track a few times on pretty worn AO48's douring a heavy downpour, but it took a lot more speed in order to get it to hydroplane...
I once hit a puddle on the Autobahn in my Miata going downhill giving everything there was, doing somewhere around 125mph on worn tires, and that was pretty scary.-eek-

As mentioned before: I'd vote for the greasy road conditions to be the reason for your experience...:shrug:
 

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I got caught in some heavy downpours last year while driving cross-country. It was in New Mexico where I first experienced hydroplning in the Elise -- 55 mph on A048s.

I found that if the water is deep enough to hide road surface texture, 50-55 mph is about the limit.

In areas where it seldom rains (Phoenix, in particular) oil, rubber, and dust build up on the road surface. Roads get very slippery with just a small amount of rain until the oil and dust is washed away. However, slick roads and hydroplaning are very different effects.
 

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Don't blame the car. It's the tires. What touches the roadway? It is the tires--not the car. The coefficient of friction is determined by the tires and the road surface.
 

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90+mph in torrential downpours with no hint of aquaplaning. Car felt more stable than any other car i've driven in the rain.

My tires are new BFG KDW2s
 

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F1 Goodyears cured the problem. They didn't work well for the first 500 miles or so, but now that work Decent on the street and great in rain/heavy rain. They along with Hoosiers for the track work great for us.
 

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Hydroplaning and slipping on a mildly wet/greasy surface are two distinctly different experiences. If you have done both then you know the difference. If you don't know the difference then I will humbly suggest that you shouldn't be driving anything in wet conditions.

A light vehicle on low-tread skis will hydroplane a lot easier than your average car. The factors that effect it are:

Water depth,

Evacuation capability of the tires' tread (effected by tread design and depth, and contact patch width),

Vehicle speed,

Contact patch loading (effected by contact patch area, tire pressure, and vehicle weight).

Put skinny, all-season, high-pressure tires on a loaded semi truck, and it would almost plow through a foot of water without hydroplaning.

Put skis on a 2000 pound toy and it will hydroplane on an 1/8 inch of water at legal speeds. So if you're on worn A048 tires, and you expect to go the speed limit, don't try skimming 1/8" deep layer of water or more.

xtn
 

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Yep - I hydropalned one at 45-50 as well. (different car :wallbang:)


So - what is one supposed to do when hydropaning (besides yelling craaaaaaaaaapppppp? :panic:)

Let off the throttle and dont steer?
 

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I've had a similar experience with ad07's. I was surprised at how quickly the back tires wore on the elise compared to the potenza's on my old MR-2.

Not sure if you're using the 07's or the 48's, but with my issue was solved by a new pair of tires in the back. I could efinatly feel that it was time to get new tires though.
 
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