New tyres require a running in period which can help to improve safety on the road. You should attempt to drive your new tyres in before tackling day-to-day driving and this will result in optimum levels of performance from your new tyres.
When tyres are manufactured, they are vulcanised in heating moulds which allows them to take shape and form. It is difficult to remove the tyres from these moulds without disrupting the process, so manufacturers tend to use a lubricant or silicone based spray to prevent them from sticking to the moulds and to remove them with ease.
Although this layer is invisible, it is present and will not wear off for a short time and it can provide a barrier between the tyre and the road. For this reason, it is important that you drive in your tyres carefully to help remove this agent.
Furthermore, the moulding process will also leave the surface of the tyre covered with small vent holes and the surface will be smooth and tread will be stiff. A period where you drive in your tyres is known to be extremely effective as it will allow your tyres to settle and attain their intended performance levels.
You should imagine the first 150 - 200 miles in your tyres as a running in period and during this time you will need to take care whilst driving in your new tyres. Following this period, your tyres should be able to offer the handling and gripping capabilities that you expect.
During this period, you should drive at a medium speed and avoid sharp cornering and harsh braking. It is also a good idea to leave a larger distance than usual to the vehicle in front, as your grip and braking properties may not yet be up to the required standard.
Whilst driving in new tyres, stick to dry roads and take care to avoid mud and snow if possible. This will help you to abrade the surface of the tyres.
As well as allowing your tyres to adjust to the roads, this running in period will give you a chance to adjust to your new tyres. Even if your new tyres are the same model as your old tyres, you will notice a significant difference whilst driving, especially if your old tyres were particularly worn.
To further improve road safety and tyre life, it is important to properly maintain your tyres following the running in period. For further information on tyre safety or driving in new tyres you can contact your local Merityre Specialists where one of our specialists can provide further advice.
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