June 3, 2016
It’s national tire safety week, a great time to check your tires and make sure they are ready for the extra miles summer vacations will put on your ride.
Only 17 percent of drivers are considered “tire smart” and know the correct way to check their tire pressure, according to a national survey conducted by the Rubber Manufacturers Association.
Underinflated tires will wear unevenly, making them a safety hazard, as well as causing additional expense when they wear out quicker.
A few inflation tips
• It’s impossible to tell if a tire is underinflated simply by looking at them.
• The pressure indicated on the tire sidewall is the maximum allowed in the tire, not matter what vehicle it is mounted on. Follow the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendation that is printed on the tire placecard, certification label or in the owner’s manual.
• Use an accurate tire gauge.
• Check inflation pressure when the tires are cold. When the vehicle has been parked for three hours or has been driven less than a mile.
• Never reduce tire pressure when the tires are hot from driving. It is normal for pressures to increase above recommended “cold” pressures.
Even if your vehicle has tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS), it is important to check your tires monthly.
Tires should be inflated to recommend pressure levels and rotated every 6,000 miles to promote uniform tire wear. Many tire companies offer free regular tire rotation when you purchase the tires or have them rotated when you have the oil changed.
The old stand-by “Penny Test” is also a good idea. Take a penny and insert it between the treads. If you can’t see the top of Lincoln’s head, your tread is getting worn and it’s time to consider replacing your tires.
Tires carry the weight of the vehicle AND your loved ones. Take care of them and they will take care of you.