Over time a tyre will deteriorate and the performance drop. Time makes fools of us all.
It is important to make sure that you carry out regular checks of your tyres to ensure that your safety on the roads is not compromised.
Tyres: What You Should Check
Giving your tyres a check up is actually a fairly quick and simple task.
For a minimum try to give your car’s tyres a visual inspection at least once every week. In particular look out for any bumps, tears or gauges.
At least once a month give the tyres a slightly more in-depth test – paying close attention to:
- Overall condition of tyres, including the sidewall.
- Tread depth.
- Tyre pressure.
- Signs of irregular wear.
- The spare tyre – this is often overlooked.
In the UK, the law states that the legal limit of tread on a tyre needs to be 1.6mm across 75% of the circumference of the tyre.
For those who do not keep on top of their tread depth, and are found to be driving on illegal tyres, the punishment (for each illegal tyre) is a fine of up to £2,500 and three points on your license.
Testing the depth of the tread can be as simple as placing a 20p piece between the tread blocks. If you are able to see the outer rim of the coin then your tyres are illegal – change them asap or face the consequences.
Despite the legal limit of 1.6mm, many within the motor and tyre industry acknowledge that a tyre’s performance take a sharp downward turn when the tread depth reaches 3mm.
Keeping your tyres at the correct pressure level is another importnat safety factor.
When a tyre is underinflated you risk it overheating – as more of the tyre is in contact with the road than should be. The rolling resistance also increases, increasing how quickly a tyre wears out.
All of this adds up to poor fuel economy and an unstable performance. In a worst case scenario the tyre may malfunction, causing a crash.
Properly inflated air pressure also aids in reducing the amount of petrol you consume during a period of time. Helping to lower the amount of money you spend on refuelling your car.