Why is Tyre Pressure Important?

Tyre pressure is extremely important for the safe running of your car. Indeed, it can have an effect on the life of your tyres, so to keep your car’s occupants safe, as well as saving you money in the long run, checking your tyre pressure regularly is essential. From good handling to helping to maintain the legal tread depth of your tyres for longer, tyre pressure is the key.

What do you need to know in order to be maintaining tyre pressure correctly at all times? These top 3 tips will help you find that out:

Tip # 1: Avoid the Under-Inflation

This is among the commonest tyre-related problems that British drivers face when out on the road. Under-inflated tyres don’t always look flat to the eye, so you need to confirm the air pressure when you fill up with fuel at your local garage.

Your car’s manual will tell you the recommended level of air pressure that is needed for maintaining tyre pressure for normal road use. Only in situations where you will be driving off-road should you dip beneath this.

How Is This Harmful?

Under-inflated tyres tend to sag a bit at the edge of the rim. This means that they wear out at the edges at an increased rate. Furthermore, they can slew as you corner which means that skidding and spinning out of control completely become unwelcome possibilities.

Depending on the tyre manufacturer, the life of a permanently under-inflated tyre can be reduced by as much as a quarter. Failing to maintain the necessary standard of inflation in your tyres could result in a Fixed Penalty Notice being handed down, or a Conditional Offer Notice in Scotland. In the worst cases, a court summons might even be made, especially if your insurance is deemed to have been invalidated.

Tip # 2: Avoid the Over-Inflation

Pumping up your tyres to an increased level of air pressure can be as bad as driving around with them under-inflated. When your tyres are over-inflated, they tend to look rounded when viewed straight on. This means that only the middle section of the tyre tends to come into contact with the tarmac and, as a result, wears down more quickly.

 How Is This Harmful?

Another consequence of over-inflated tyres is that just a small area of tyre is in contact with the road, providing grip. This can also lead to handling issues on corners, but it will also mean that your braking distance increases. Drivers of cars with over-inflated tyres take longer to come to a halt which can be disastrous in emergencies.

Over-inflated tyres are also more likely to blow out. If you have to bump up and down kerbs or sleeping policemen on your journeys, then your tyres take a hit each time. Likewise, driving over potholes can cause tyres damage. However, just like a balloon which is ready to pop, it takes less effort to make a tyre burst or shred from a bump on the road. Therefore, keeping your tyres over-inflated tends to lead to an increased risk of blowing out.

Tip # 3: Keep a regular check on Tyre pressure

A visual inspection of your tyres is usually helpful. Confirm that each tyre looks flat the the ground when viewed straight on with no bulges or sags. However, how to check tyre pressure properly means using a meter attached to the valve of each tyre. Do this at a filling station or at home with your own device, but only when the car is relatively cold to ensure a good reading is made. Alternatively, consult Point S for advice on tyre safety.

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