Tyres are one of those things almost every motorist takes for granted. To most, they’re simply part of the car and need to be changed when they wear down. What most don’t realise is that tyres are the car’s only point of contact with the road. They are essentially the car’s ‘shoes’. They are subject to unimaginable stresses and traumas, especially on today’s potholed roads.
Some people have a very cavalier approach to their tyres. They say things like ‘I’m not a racing driver, so I don’t need to worry’ or ‘I’ve never skidded in my life!’. However, there’s always a first, and everyone neglects their tyres at their own peril. Listed below are a few life saving tips about tyres that everyone should heed, regardless of the car they drive.
Our Top Tips
Check your tyre pressures weekly.
Most tyres will hold their pressure for long periods of time, but very occasionally there may be an occasion where a piece of grit gets into the valve, or a nail pierces the tyre. This won’t result in a blowout or immediate event. But it can cause a slow decrease in pressure, meaning that the next time you take the car out it could be in a dangerous condition.
Don’t over-inflate your tyres.
Over (or under) inflated tyres will wear unevenly and will result in less tread being in contact with the road. This will often show as the middle of the tread wearing out more quickly than the outer edges. It will also result in an uncomfortable ride.
Under-inflated tyres can get hot very quickly and can result in uneven wear and a high risk of blowing out at speed.
Measure your tread depth regularly.
Estimating tread depth visually is almost impossible. Different tread patterns can give different estimations. For just a couple of pounds, a tread depth gauge is an essential safety tool. Don’t just take a reading on one point of the tyre either. Make sure that a few readings are taken. Check top, bottom, inside and outside of the tread.
Don’t assume that just because you have good tread depth that your tyres are safe.
Low-mileage cars can sometimes have tyres that look almost new, but in actual fact are many years old. The rubber compounds in tyres deteriorate with age. A tyre that still has 5mm of tread depth, but is ten years old may need to be replaced. This is simply because the tyre no longer has the strength and flexibility to sustain the forces it will experience on the open road.
Kerbing and potholing.
If your tyre hits a kerb or pothole at speed it can seriously damage the structure of the tyre, causing weak spots and/or bulges. These are sometimes invisible or on the inside wall of the tyre. If your tyre is kerbed or potholed, it is always a good idea to pop into a dealer to check the tyre over before driving any distance or at speed. It’s also prudent to check the tracking and alignment of the wheels after such an event. Misaligned wheels can result in poor handling and rapid, uneven wear.
Use the right kind of tyre for the conditions.
For those who spend most of their motoring time on long motorway journeys, the ideal type of tyre will be different to someone who commutes on busy urban roads. Winter tyres are ideal for those who live and drive in wintry conditions.
Life Saving Tips About Tyres From Your Dealer
Our advice would be to contact a reputable local tyre dealer. They will have a wealth of knowledge about all of the above. A few extra pounds here and there could actually save a life! Looking for car tyres online in Basingstoke? Shop online at Headley Tyres and get branded car tyres within your budget!