Pre Monsoon Checklist for your Home, Car, Bike & Health

This is going to be the mother of all Pre Monsoon Checklists. Get ready for it. This is one season that I love because its green, its breezy and lovely. But, to brave a 4-month long, you need to have a plan and a pretty good one at that. This is a collection of wisdom collected from many households, grandfathers and caring mothers. Follow this guide and monsoon will not be anything but fun. Enjoy.


Home Monsoon Readiness

Monsoon is a time for the family & friends. To stay indoors, enjoy chai and pakoras and chat till you drop. But, the home has to be hospitable and ready for the rains. Here are some tips that can keep your home in top shape during the monsoon.

Buy a Bigger Doormat

You are not going to sit indoors all through the season. When getting in and out of the house, its inevitable that the footwear will be soiled. Usually, at our Indian homes, we have this small coir doormat. Unfortunately, that’s not going to be enough for the rainy season. The doormat has to deal with a lot more wet mud and should be easy to clean. Which is why, I recommend thick PVC doormats. These doormats don’t look the most pleasing, but are very effective since they are large and easy to wash the mud off.

They usually come in large rolls and you can go to the local hardware store and buy a few meters. They cut them into size for you. We recommend that you should have one for every entrance to the house and one extra (for the rainy day). These doormats cost between Rs. 400 to Rs. 500 per meter which is a bit pricey, but will save you a lot of headaches.

Thick PVC Doormat

Implement a No-Shoes-In-The-House Rule

For ages, Indian homes have had a no-shoes rule. Usually, there is a shoe rack close to the entrance where one has to leave all the footwear. Somewhere, this tradition has been forgotten in the modern homes of India. But, the monsoon is a good time to re-initiate this tradition. You might have a good doormat, but if the person entering is not thorough with the wiping, you could end up with disaster foot marks in your living room

Umbrella Bucket Outside the House

Now, I am sure you did not forget to buy umbrellas, but maybe you did forget that when people come from the rain, they need someplace to keep their umbrella. If they find nothing, they might stick their wet umbrella next to a wall leaving it all wet (unless they are the coolest and are using inverted umbrellas). So, do yourself a favour and get a nice umbrella bucket to keep at the door.

It might also be a good DIY project with the kids to build your own umbrella buckets.

Also, it goes without saying that you should have one umbrella for each member of your family ready. We have a great buying guide for the smallest umbrella in India which you should checkout.

Clear out the Balconies

If you have balconies and other outdoor space, usually it ends up becoming storage for somethings that are not needed. Stuff like old footwear, sports items, bad washing machine or cooler. This might not be a good idea. You might end up losing the stuff that you might use one day. Also, these things can collect water during the monsoons and become festering ground for mosquitoes. We cover this in more detail in the health section of this article.

Solution to Drying Clothes Indoors

Drying clothes is the other big hassle during the monsoons. If it’s going to rain every day, your clothes will not dry up for 2-3 days. No need to resort to converting the whole house into a clothes line. Just invest in a fold-able electric clothes dryer. These things come with a little electric heat radiator, fitted under a fold-able cupboard of sorts. You can hang many clothes using hangers and various rails and switch it on. In a few hours the clothes are all dry and your home is not a mess.

Electric foldable clothes dryer

Move the Plants to Safety

The monsoon rains could be ruthless for plants. Its not uncommon to see trees get uprooted with the gusty winds and continuous rains. Think of the poor little plants in your balcony. They are like toddlers of plants. They need protection, cannot take the hard weather outside. Do them a favour and move them further inside the balcony where water does not reach. You could also move some of them to other covered areas like staircases and lobbies.

While this balcony is great, it will get destroyed in the monsoons. Its best to get all the furniture out and move the plants against the inside wall

Check Outdoor Wiring

It is not uncommon to have lights of other electrical points in outdoor areas like balconies and terraces. During the rains, these could be dangerous. If not checked carefully, water could seep into them and could cause short circuits. Before the monsoon, please get an electrician to come and check these electric points and make sure that they are properly water proofed.


Protecting your Car from Monsoons

Today, our cars are extensions of our homes. But, during the rains, they stand outside all day and all night and take the battering. Here is how you can show some pre monsoon love to your car so its ready.

Checking the Tyres

Its not uncommon to experience some skidding in your car during the monsoon, which is dangerous. You can take these two simple steps to ready up your tyres.

  • Check to ensure that for enough tread. The tread of the tyres is designed to ensure enough grip on the roads and to repel water. But, if the tyres are overused, there might not be enough tread and could be dangerous. Its good to replace such tyres before the rains.
  • Deflate the tyres a tiny bit from the usual. This creates more contact area between the tyres and the road. This simple hack might save your from a nasty skid.
  • Ready Spare Tyre – While you are at it checking all the tyres, it might a good idea to pull out your spare tyre and check it. Make sure its not punctured or deflated.

Keep the Brakes in Top Form

It is very important that during the rains you keep your breaks properly serviced and oiled. During the monsoons, the visibility might be poor and there might be instances where you might need to hit the breaks hard. They need to be in top form.

Good Wipers are Crucial

Wipers may not be considered a key part of the cars mechanics, but during the rainy season they are crucial. Most manufacturers say that a set of wipers should last 2-3 years, but in the high-rain parts of India, it is recommended to change them every year before the monsoons. If your wipers leave a watery residue on the windscreen after even 2 wipes, then it is time to change them. You should take this very seriously because your visibility might anyways be hampered due to the rain.

It might also help to invest in water repellent spray or lotion for the wind screens. These liquids have water repellent properties. You need to apply them on your windshield before the rains it causes the rain drops to bead up and fall off the windshield faster.

Check your Hazard Lights

Another crucial check for the car are the hazard lights. At times, we don’t pay attention to them. But during the rains, it might be of utmost importance. The cars coming from the rear may not be able to see your clearly, but if you have your hazard lights blinking, it will certainly catch their eye.

Paint Protection with Wax Coating

Indian cities are topping the charts in terms of pollution these days. That does make the rain water acidic and may not bode very well with your car paint. It might be a good idea to get a quick wax coating done for your car. Another way to protect your car is to use one of these modern car umbrellas which area also useful in the heat.

Best Car Umbrella in India

Pre Monsoon Check for Bikers

If you are a biker, it is even more important for you to do certain pre-monsoon checks. You are literally balancing this thing on two wheels and getting beaten down with rain. You need to be double sure of the precautions.

Checking the Tyres

You will experience some skidding in your bike during the monsoon, especially around sharp turns. This is very dangerous. You can take these simple steps to ready up your tyres.

  • Enough tread – The tread of the tyres are the tiny gaps which are meant for the water to flow within the typer. They designed to ensure enough grip on the roads and to repel water. But, if the tyres are overused, there might not be enough tread and could be dangerous. Its good to replace such tyres before the rains.
  • Deflate the tyres a tiny bit from the usual. This creates more contact area between the tyres and the road. This simple hack might save your from a nasty skid.
  • Drive slow and don’t turn sharp

The Brakes are Super-important

The brakes (drum or disk) may get affected by rain water. They could loose their efficiency in the rains. You should thoroughly check your brakes before the monsoons and also one should try to keep the disc clean in case the bike has a disc brake.

How you brake is also very important. You should not brake hastily, even if your bike has ABS (Anti-lock Braking System). Ride slow and maintain a good distance from other vehicles. Braking hard on wet roads could result in loss of traction and your bike just might skid.

Get an Anti-Rust Layer

Most bikes nowadays come with a fibre bodywork, however, classic motorcycles such as Royal Enfields and some of the scooters have a metal body. Some parts of fibre body bikes, like meta main frame, are also exposed meta. It is better to use Teflon coating on the panels as it will prevent them from rusting. Also, every bike comes with a metal main frame that can also be protected by using an anti-rust protection layer to maintain its strength for a longer period of time.

Another area where rust could cause a problems is the key cavities of your bike. You can get one of these anti-rust sprays which you can use in the key cavity and other expose metal areas of the bike.

Anti rust spray

Helmet is Super Important

Chances of skidding is high. You need to have a safe helmet which is in good condition to protect yourself in the rain. The important factors while choosing a good helmet are

  • Full face helmet is a must. That is the only way to stay safe
  • Strongest outer shell
  • Well placed ventilators to keep your face comfortable.

These guys have done a very in-depth tests of all the helmets in the Indian market and have chose the LS2 Full Face Helmet to be the best.


Family Health Checklist before Monsoons

Keep the family healthy this monsoon

While monsoon is a great season, it does bring with itself its own set of health risks. Little bit of readiness on your part can make sure that you and your family does not fall ill this monsoon and can enjoy the rains.

Service your Water Filters

Most monsoon illnesses are drinking water related. All the water sources and water storage areas are undress stress and it is possible that your regular tap water gets a bit contaminated. Most Indian homes do use a water filter like Aquagard or some RO based filter. Usually, these filters should be serviced every year and just before the monsoon is a great time to get this done. The service staff will come and replace the candles or various filters inside the appliance and also clear the sediments from the storage tanks.

Stock up on Mosquito Repllants

Another common problem in monsoons is mosquito breeding, which these days translates to the threat of Malaria and Dengue. Its better not to take a chance and make sure you have ample mosquito repellents ready. They come usually in the following avatars.


Lotion

Spray

Patches

Machine

Keep Stomach Medicine Ready

Ideally, you should not eat outside during this season. But, you cannot always be sure of that. Better to keep some stomach medicine ready in the house. Common choice is to have Pudin hara capsules in ample quantity ready in the house. In case of acute diarrhoea, it might be wise to have some ORS packets handy to keep the patient hydrated.

Cold & Flu Medicine in your Medicine Box

If you have kids (and naughty ones) its highly likely to have a bout of cold and flu will be around in your house this monsoon. It will be very helpful to have some flu medicine in the house like Crocin, Vicks Vapour Rub, Tiger Balm, DCold and some cough syrup.

From personal experience, I can say that a good strategy is to have a steam inhaler handy at home. These are machines in which you can pour a small quantity of water, switch on and have the patient put their face on the face mask. When your kids start sniffling a bit in the rains, get them to steam and run Vicks on their chest before they go to sleep. This acts as prevention, which is better than cure.

Drink Turmeric Ginger Tea

Ginger turmeric tea

Another prevention (better than cure) is to get into the habit of having a turmeric ginger tea every day during the monsoons. This keeps your immunity high to fight the infections around. Turmeric is known to have many medicinal properties. A cut or a bruise in the yester-years was treated with a smear of turmeric. The is proven to have properties that help throat congestion. Making this tea is super simple.

  • Put some water in a pan to boil. If you need one cup of tea, take 1.5 cups of water
  • Grate a generous amount of ginger into the water while its on the gas. For one cup, take a teaspoon heap full
  • Let the water boil away at low flame for 5 mins. You will see the water reduce and the aroma get very gingery
  • Turn the flame off
  • Add a pinch of turmeric and 1 teabag of your chosen tea into it. You can use any Tulse green tea from Organic India (bags or leaves).
  • Let it steep for 2 mins and then pour in a cup and enjoy
  • Add some honey if you like it sweet

Monsoon Disaster Readiness

Kerala Floods
Kerala Floods of 2018

The horrible flash floods in Kerala taught us a lesson last year. Kerala always got a lot of rain, but it never used to flood. Flash floods and becoming more and more common with global warming and unchecked development in Indian cities. I urge all of you to think a bit about disaster readiness if (God forbid) something like that happens in your area.

You need to prepare for scenarios like

  • Being cut-off for 4-5 days where you cannot go out to get suppliers
  • There is a power shut down for a few days
  • Water supply also may get effected

Backup Food Supply

If there is a problem, one of the first things you will need to be ready with is some backup food supply. It is a good idea to keep some ready foods like Maggi or canned foods stored in your kitchen cabinet. Another good option is to keep a backup store of rice and daal. 4-5 kgs of rice and and 2 kgs of daal would easily last your 4 days.

Drinking Water Storage

I would also recommend that you get one of those 20 litre water bottles. Fill it up with clean drinking water and put it aside in the kitchen for a disaster day. In case of floods, clean drinking water supply might be effected. Even if water is available, it is possible that your water purifier is not working due to a power cut. It is always wise to keep 20 litres of drinking water in reserve.

Gas Cylinders should be Full

You do not want to find yourself in a situation where your gas cylinder is running out during a flood. One of these weekends before the rains hit, make a trip to the local gas agency and get a spare cylinder. In the case of a disaster, you will have food to eat with your family.

Keep Emergency Lights, Power banks Charged

Communication is also a key requirement during times of calamity. Its almost certain that the power will be shut down in your area if there is flooding. It is good to have an extra power bank which is always charged so that you can communicate with the outside world. Also, keep your emergency light charged and buy 2-3 packets of candled ready for the nights.

Don’t Forget to Enjoy the Rains

I hope I have not scarred your monsoon with these long checklists. So, before I close I must close with a list of things that you must do to enjoy the monsoon season.

  • Take a walk in the rain and get wet one day. You can let your guard down for one day. It’s okay
  • Go for a long drive outside the city on one of the weekends. Maybe visit a waterfall or a rivulet.
  • Organize a Chai & Pakora party with your friends
  • Teach your kids how to make paper boats
  • Watch this quintessential rain Bollywood song and then watch Zakir Khan take it apart.

1 comment / Add your comment below

  1. Awesome post! Thanks for sharing this helpful post as during this season most of the people especially the children fall ill. You have made the post very enjoyable with the tips for enjoying the monsoon as well while taking care. Keep sharing such posts.

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