Top 5 Tips for Tyre Care and Safety
It is so easy to forget that your tyres are the only point of contact between the road and your vehicle. This is why it’s extremely important, if your vehicle is rented or privately owned, to preserve the quality and performance of your tyres to ensure your mobility and your safety.
We understand how important it is for our customers to feel safe whilst driving, so this is why we have written a blog focusing on tyre safety and changing a flat tyre. Below we’ve split this post out into some of the most commonly asked questions, so let’s begin!
Service Life – Knowing when to replace your used tyres
Unfortunately, you cannot purchase a set of tyres and accurately know when the life of that tyre will come to an end. A tyre is composed of many different materials and rubber that affects its performance and this also depends on other factors like weather, storage conditions and driving conditions. Drivers need to regularly check their tyres to identify any signs a tyre needs replacing.
As well as regular inspections, drivers should have their tyres replaced if they are more than ten years old from their manufacture date and follow the vehicle manufacturer’s tyre replacement recommendation.
What is the correct tyre pressure?
The best tyre pressure will depend on the vehicle itself, and the load you are carrying in the vehicle. If you are unsure of what tyre pressure should be in your vehicle it can be found on the inside of the fuel filler cap, in the vehicle manufacturers handbook or inside the driver’s door sill – if you are still unsure give us a call and we can let you know!
Remember, the pressure of your tyres should reflect the amount of weight that the vehicle has inside it. For example, a car with a lot of luggage and/or passengers will need more tyre pressure compared to a car with only one passenger.
Rear Tyres – for complete control, fit new tyres to the rear axle
Your rear wheels are not connected to your steering wheel, which makes it very hard to judge how they are gripping the road whilst driving. Therefore we recommend, when you get new tyres you fit them to the rear wheels of your vehicle to ensure better control in emergency braking, less risk of losing control of your vehicle and better road holding, particularly in difficult situations, where your car is front or rear wheel drive.
How to measure tyre tread?
The 20p test is a very simple test to measure the tread of your tyres. When the 20p is put into the main tread grooves, the outer band of the coin should be obscured; this means that the tyres are above the legal limit, and you are safe to drive.
How do you change a flat tyre for your spare?
If you find you have a tyre blow out or a puncture you cannot drive on you may find you need to change your tyre for the spare to get to a garage. If you have never done it before it is wise to have a practice run first.
· Have you got a spare? You may have a compressor or puncture tyre weld.
· If you have a spare and need to change your tyre ensure no one is inside the vehicle
· Find a hard flat spot where you are clear from moving traffic to change your tyre
· Apply the handbrake and put the vehicle is park (for automatics) or in gear (for manuals).
· Block the wheels (to prevent them moving) on the opposite side to the flat tyre.
· Remove the wheel cover, and loosen the wheel nuts. Do not remove them at this point.
· Place the jack underneath the jacking point on a flat piece of ground. If you’re unsure of where the jacking point is, check the vehicle manual.
· Remove the nuts and wheel, pulling the wheel towards you with both hands.
· Replace the flat tyre with the spare tyre.
· Replace all the wheel nuts and the wheel cover, in that order.
· Carefully lift the flat tyre back into the car.
· Go to the nearest garage to get the wheel nuts checked to the correct torque, as over or under tightening can lead to damage.
· Take the damaged tyre to your local tyre garage for a puncture repair or new tyre.
Please note, most temporary spares have a speed limit of 50mph and a distance of 50 miles.