You can play an important role in tyre maintenance. Tyres need to be replaced due to many reasons, including tread worn down to least depth, punctures, cuts, damage, underinflation, cracks, bulges, impacts, overloading. Due to these reasons, all tyres including spares must be inspected on regular basis. Recommended inspection interval is at least once a month.
Regular inspection becomes crucial the longer a tyre is in use. If you observe tyre damage, it is recommended that you get the tyre inspected by a tyre service professional. This will help you to decide if the tyres can continue in service or require any further alignment/balancing or replacement. It is also recommended that spare tyres should also be inspected at the same time.
You must be aware of your tyres visual condition and stay alert for any change in performance variables such as noise, air loss, or vibration. Such changes are an indicator that one or more of the tyres must be immediately replaced to prevent a tyre disablement.
Why is a regular visual inspection of your tyres important?
Tyres should be visually checked for damage, like nails, stones, or any sharp objects that may have penetrated the tyre. You should also be observant for tears cuts, or bulges that may happen as result of contact with road hazards. If you are not clear about the condition of your tyres, you can have them checked by a tyre dealer or similar tyre specialist.
Visual check of your tyres is an easy task and can be done when you are doing the regular tyre pressure check.
Tyre pressures recommended for your vehicle are agreed between the vehicle manufacturer and the tyre manufacturer. The recommended tyre pressures for your vehicle/tyre can be found inside the fuel filler flap, in your vehicle handbook, or on the driver’s door jamb.
Tyre pressure is an important aspect of vehicle performance. It helps in directional stability and driving comfort. It also addresses safety issues when cornering or applying emergency brakes. Overall tyre pressure helps in general handling of the vehicle.
Keeping incorrect tyre pressure will cause degraded performance in one or more of these characteristics.
How to check tyre inflation pressure?
Tyres must be inflated to the pressure recommended by the vehicle and tyre manufacturer. It varies depending on the load and service conditions of Tyre/Vehicle. When we speak about the recommended pressure it always refers to the COLD tyre.
The pressure inside warm tyres will be higher, because driving causes heat build up. So it is also important not to reduce the pressure of warm tyres. As tyres are cooled down their pressure could fall and it may even fall below the minimum tyre pressure.
It is recommended that tyre pressure should be checked and adjusted every fourteen days. Its very important to check and adjust tyre pressures when going on a long journey or on holiday. When you are going on such long rides, possibly you will be carrying additional load, hence it requires tyre pressures to be increased according to the load specification.
With Over Inflated Tyres you may face performance degradation in following aspects of driving
- Driving Comfort
- Directional Stability
- Vehicle Handling
- Cornering at Speed
- Irregular Wear
With Under Inflated Tyres you may face performance degradation in following aspects of driving
- Steering Response
- Directional Stability
- Driving Safety
- Tyre Dislodging from the rim when Cornering
- Economy – Higher Fuel Consumption
- Ttyre Durability
- Irregular Wear
Why is tyre position rotation beneficial?
Rotations help in longer tread life and uniform tread wear, to achieve best results tyres should be regularly rotated.
Follow the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendation for the rotation pattern and interval. It is recommended to rotate the wheels axle-wise on regular basis. Unless vehicle manufacturer has recommended a different rotation plan.
If tyres start to show uneven tread wear, ask the tyre specialist to check and correct any vehicle wheel balancing, and alignment issues or diagnose if there is any other mechanical problem.
Full-size spare tyres of the same size and construction as the ground contact tyres should be included in the tyre rotation. Regularly check and adjust the inflation pressure of the full-size spare as well when incorporating it into the rotation. Adjust the tyre inflation pressures according to the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendation for the new wheel position (recommended front and rear position tyre pressures may be different).
If your vehicle is equipped with the Tyre Pressure Monitoring System, rotation of your tyres may affect it. Check your vehicle owner’s manual or a service professional to make the proper adjustments or recalibration of the system.
Never reverse the rolling direction of directional tyres.
Mixing tyres on your vehicle
When mixing tyres, tyre size, load index and speed symbol should be carefully chosen. All these attributes of tyres have to match vehicle manufacturer’s specification for all wheel positions. In some countries, it is a legal requirement, but in countries like Pakistan or other developing countries, you should practice it yourself or consult tyre service specialist as there is no such legal obligation for it.
Driving with the non-recommended mix of tyre sizes, constructions, and speed ratings can be dangerous. Always follow the vehicle manual or consult a tyre specialist. If you plan to upgrade tyres to an upsize size then constructions, load ratings or speed ratings must be in compliance with vehicles recommended ratings.