Know Your tyre Pressure
Drivers should check their tyre pressures regularly, at least once a month, to ensure they are being maintained at the level recommended by the vehicle manufacturer. If the tyre pressure is incorrect, the vehicles handling will be affected and tyre wear can occur prematurely, leading to irreversible tyre damage.
Tyre pressure should also be checked before a long journey, and this includes the spare wheel, to ensure the level is safe for the duration of the ride. Be sure to check tyre pressure when the tyres are still cold and haven't travelled any great distance. When tyres are warm, the pressure can change to read differently.
THE eFFECTS OF UNDER-INFLATION
If tyres are under-inflated, they will suffer excessively with flexing and become very hot on journeys, which could end with a dangerous blow-out that puts the driver and passengers at risk. Under-inflated tyres make vehicles harder to control as under-inflated front tyres will result in under-steer, whilst under-inflated rear tyres will lead to over-steer.
The myth that under-inflated tyres sit nicely and firmly on the road is incorrect, as when a tyre is going flat the edges deflect inward, causing the centre of the tyre to lift up, thus reducing the tyre's contact area with the road. When this happens, the vehicles braking performance can be affected and the chance of aquaplaning increases as the tyre is less able to clear surface water.
If under-inflated tyres are not altered to the correct pressure, the edges of the tyres will experience extreme loading and will lead to rapid wear and quickly reduce the tyre's life. In serious cases, it could cause irreversible damage to the tyre sidewall.
THE EFFECTS OF OVER-INFLATION
Just like under-inflation, over-inflation limits the amount of surface area that is in contact with the road, negatively affecting vehicle handling and braking, with a similar risk of aquaplaning.
Over inflation causes the sides of the tyre to bulge, lifting the edges of the tyre away from the ground. This speeds up the rate of wear to the centre of the tread and can make the tyre more vulnerable to impact fracture or other casing failures.
Also, if a tyre is over-inflated, it will not absorb shocks from the road well, resulting in a considerably harder ride that becomes increasingly uncomfortable over long journeys.
For more information and to get genuine tyres for your car, contact us at your local Caffyns dealership.