As we were talking about rain in expressions with Nangi and Elisabeth, let's compare all existing expressions in English and Japanese.

Expressions related to heavy rain :

It's pouring (with rain)
It's pelting (with rain)

"it's raining cats and dogs" (idiom) = hidoku ame ga futte iru
"it's coming down in buckets" (idiom)

nouns by progressive intensity

a shower
a downpour
a torrent (or more commonly torrential rain )
a deluge

Expressions related to light rain :

(to) drizzle = kirisame J ,mekaame fJ
(to) sleet = misore

How can I translate all these in Japanese ? They are all fairly common in English. I was told that "mekaame" is never used in Japanese. I'd like to know if there are common translations in Japanese, other than "ame ga tsuyoku/hidoku/hageshiku futte imasu", which would only translate "it's raining hard/heavily/very heavily" ...