Top Ten Car Tyre Tips
Car tyres don’t generally ask too much of you. However, neglecting them can prove expensive and, in some circumstances, dangerous. These ten tips will enhance car tyre life, reduce your spending and perhaps save your life.
1. The wrong car tyre pressure is costly. Running on overinflated tyres accelerates wear and reduces both grip and ride comfort. Underinflated tyres also wear more quickly, and can worsen fuel economy by as much as ten percent. Check your tyre pressures regularly.
2. Cuts in car tyres are obvious. Lumps or bulges may be less so but they tend to indicate damage inside the car tyre’s carcass. Check for any such damage while correcting tyre pressures. If in any doubt, avoid the risk of a blowout by having a tyre specialist examine the damage.
3. A spare wheel with a flat tyre is worse than useless. Check the spare tyre pressure regularly, unless you have run flat tyres or an onboard tyre pump and repair kit. Remember that space saver spare tyres generally have speed and distance restrictions.
4. If, at car tyre checking time, you find a stone embedded in a tyre tread, you can lever it out before it causes damage. However, if you find a nail in a tyre, leave it alone. The nail will be temporarily keeping the air in – have a tyre specialist take a look. He may be able to repair the tyre.
5. While using the tyre inflator at a garage, or a tyre pump at home, look after the tyre valve dust caps. They keep dirt and grit away from the delicate valves, and are a line of defence against tyre pressure loss. Always put them back carefully.
6. Potholes can damage more than your car tyres. Hit a large one hard enough and you could be facing a bill for the repair or replacement of one or more wheels. Should you be unlucky enough to encounter a big pothole and suspect damage has occurred, stop and examine the affected wheel(s) and tyre(s).
7. Never straddle a speed bump. Instead, let the wheels on one side of your car pass over the bump. This will prevent damage to your car’s tyres, steering and suspension. When negotiating speed bumps and road-width speed pads, slow down or face the cost of repairs.
8. When you’re manoeuvering, curb your enthusiasm so you don’t kerb your car tyres. Kerb impacts can wreck not only tyres, they can scratch, chip and even dent your car’s wheels. Steering misalignment can also result from kerbing.
9. Keep your car in a garage, if you can. Car tyres suffer from prolonged exposure to ultra violet light. This leads to cracking and crazing of the car tyre sidewalls’ structure.
10. When the time to buy replacement tyres rolls around, think about replacing all four. Should this be too costly, always have new tyres fitted in pairs. It’s accepted that the new tyres should be fitted to the rear wheels.