You are driving down a street and suddenly you hear thump, thump and thump. As the vehicle slows you realize it’s a flat tire. At that moment drivers are keenly aware that the only point of contact between a vehicle and the road are the tires.
Plymouth Rock Assurance reminds drivers that a vehicle’s tires are just as important a safety feature as its brakes. With help from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, let’s review some basic tire safety items:
- Get in the habit of checking your tire pressure regularly, preferably once a month and remember that to get an accurate reading, measure tire pressure when the car has been unused for at least three hours. The best time to do this might be in the morning before you head out.
- To make the above task easy, purchase a tire gauge and keep it in the glove box (Right next to your proof of car insurance).
- Carefully examine the tread on your tires for uneven wear pattern. The tire might be over inflated if the tread is deeper on the edges than in the middle. If the tread is deeper in the middle than on the edge, then your tire may be under inflated.
- Foreign objects like glass, stones etc., can lead to tire issues down the road. Remove them from the tread being careful not to damage the tire.
- Make sure the tire valves have caps
- If you are about to embark on a long trip, definitely check the tire pressure and if your tires are more than two years old, conduct a quarter test. Hold the quarter, head down, and stick it in the tire tread groove. Ideally part of Washington’s head will be covered. If Washington’s entire head is showing, it may be time to start thinking about a new tire.
- Remember the weight of a vehicle can have a fairly significant impact so avoid overloading by checking the tire information placard (usually located on the driver’s door hinge pillar, door latch post, or the door edge) or owner’s manual for the correct maximum recommended load
- When towing a trailer, don’t forget that some of the weight of the loaded trailer is transferred to the towing vehicle
- Severe weather sets the stage for the proliferation of potholes-slow down and drive over the pothole as slowly as possible
- You can eliminate some unnecessary wear and tear on tires by not rubbing the curb while parking
And don’t forget that properly inflated tires are not only safer but will save you money on fuel costs and tire replacement.
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