Most RC cars are used outside, therefore, it’s important to know if your car is waterproof, and how waterproof is it.
when it comes to waterproofing, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you can sink your RC car in the ocean and keep running it afterward.
Let’s find out if which RC cars are waterproof and what waterproofing means.
What RC Cars Are Waterproof?
These days many RC cars are labeled waterproof, and the manufacturers are going through extreme lengths to ensure that their products are truly water-resistant.
Most of the RC cars that are waterproof are RTR (ready-to-run) cars.
That being said, it’s important to know that RC cars are waterproof up to a certain level, and you shouldn’t use them underwater.
Axial Say on their website “This claim of the vehicle being waterproof is somewhat misleading”, nonetheless they do have cars with waterproof components.
Traxxas actually submerges a prototype before the final product goes into production, to ensure it works.
7 RC Cars That Are Waterproof:
- Traxxas E-Maxx.
- ARRMA Granite Voltage.
- HPI E-Firestorm 10T Flux.
- Laegendary(Legend) 1:10 Scale RC CAR 30+ mph.
- Axial SCX10 II Deadbolt with waterproof ESC.
- Redcat Blackout XBE PRO – Has a waterproof ESC and servo.
- Losi Baja Rey – Has waterproof ESC, servo, and receiver.
The cars on this list certainly aren’t meant for an underwater adventure, but if you get caught in a rainstorm or want to wash your car you can take it out and not worry about the inside getting wet.
Are Nitro RC Cars Waterproof?
When it comes to nitro RC cars, they are generally water resistant, or “splashproof”.
Water can cause a lot of damage if they get into the electronics because there is fuel and oil inside the engine that will ruin your car’s components.
For example, if water gets inside the spark plug it can create a short circuit and ruin your car’s motor.
As a general rule, Its ok to run them in the rain and in shallow puddles, but you must watch out where you run them, and make sure they don’t get submerged in water for a long period of time.
Which RC Car Will Work Best In Wet Conditions?
Traxxas – has the largest variety of waterproof cars, and according to they’re website “Traxxas engineers took this as a challenge, and developed the industry’s first-ever ready-to-run models with waterproof electronics”.
ARRMA – also has some very interesting cars, their Granite Voltage car is built to be waterproof, and was designed with waterproof components in mind.
Most RC cars that have waterproof stamp will work just fine under wet conditions such as rain, mud, and puddles.
Which Components of An RC Car Shouldn’t Get Wet?
If you submerge your RC car for a long period of time, water can get inside the motor and short it out.
Another component that shouldn’t get wet is the battery pack. Yes, LiPo batteries are mostly waterproof, but they will get damaged if water gets inside.
We recommend you remove the battery pack from the car if you’re going to wash it with a hose since batteries are quite expensive, and you don’t want to ruin them.
Waterproof vs Water Resistance
It’s important to know the difference.
Waterproof means that if you submerge something in water it will still work, and it according can be used underwater.
Water resistance is when neither water nor moisture can intrude through an opening in the product.
How Waterproof Are RC Cars?
To make the electronics waterproof, manufacturers put them in plastic cases, and there are usually some openings to allow wires inside.
Those openings are Achilles’s heel because water can get inside if you submerge your car for a long period of time.
So even if your car says “waterproof” on the box, it really should say “water resistant”.
The Box Has A “Waterproof” Stamp On It. Is It Really Waterproof?
When your RC car says it’s waterproof, this generally means that there are gaskets, or O-rings that keep water out.
It doesn’t necessarily mean that the car can be submerged in water and still work.
Does RC Car Waterproof For A Hose Wash?
After a muddy day at the track, you can wash your car with a hose, but you must do it carefully. Don’t just spray it, you need to be gentle and precise.
To prevent water from getting into the electronics’ case, just use a sprayer without any soap or detergent, and make sure you don’t spray the electronics directly.
When using a hose, make sure the water doesn’t go inside the car’s electronics and especially the wires that lead to the motor and battery pack.
Also, don’t use a pressure washer to wash your RC car. the pressure can actually push the dirt further inside the cracks, and damage your electronics.
Furthermore, pressure washers have a powerful stream that can remove or even rip wires or components from your car.
If you decide to submerge your RC car in water, just make sure that it’s only for a short period of time.
How To Make Your RC Car Components Waterproof?
To make an RC car waterproof you need to seal all of the electronics and all openings where water may get inside.
- Motor – If you have a brushed motor than its not a problem since most of them are waterproof.
- Receiver and Receiver Pack – The receiver and receiver pack can be sealed with a balloon or a durable plastic bag, make sure all of the wires are sealed together and then seal it silicon and a zip.
- Servos – Some servos are waterproof, but in general they are not waterproof. You can seal them with a plastic tube or a balloon, or just put silicon on the servo’s case.
- ESC (speed controller) – ESCs are actually hard to waterproof since they warm up when you’re driving. Our recommendation is to buy a specific case that will make your ESC waterproof and dont use a plastic bag or a balloon that can melt altogether and ruin your ESC.
- Battery Pack – The battery pack is usually quite resistant to water, so its ok to leave it as is.
- Wires – Wires are usually sealed with rubber, so it’s ok to leave them as they are. We do recommend sealing the holes with silicone or grease, however, so water won’t run on them and get to the motor, battery pack, servo ETC.
What Happens to The Transmitter’s Radio Signal Underwater?
Radio signals can travel through water, but they don’t go far.
The signal travels on the surface of the water and dissipates quickly.
Water is denser than air and this makes it harder for radio signals to propagate.
This means that if you’re driving your car and it goes underwater there is a chance that you will lose radio signal and you may lose your car.
How To Dry Your RC Car After A Wet Day?
When your car gets wet, there is a possibility that water can get inside the components.
The best to dry your car is just to put it in the sun and let the sun’s rays do the drying for you. This will probably take longer, but it’s the best way to dry your car without worrying about damaging any of its components.
Another way to dry your RC car is using hot air that will evaporate any remaining water and will save you from damaging your electronics.
You can use a hair dryer to do this, or you can use a heat gun.
Just make sure the air is not too hot, and that the dryer is not too close to the components, or else it can damage and distort the plastics and wires.
After Water Maintenance Tips
When you go running your car in the rain and puddles, there’s a chance that water will get inside the components.
Here are some tips to maintain your rc cars after water:
– Remove the battery pack from the car if it gets wet.
– Avoid submerging or washing with high pressure water source.
– Let the car dry in the sun, or with hot air.
– Make sure that all of the openings are closed, like the receiver holes and motor.
– Let your rc cars dry for at least 48 hours before using them again to make sure they are completely dry.
– seal cracks and holes with silicon or grease.
– Replace any wire that was damaged, or exposed.