Your tyres are a critical piece of equipment that impact the ride quality, handling, and safety of your car. Your tyres are an investment, and like any other investment should be properly cared for. By taking note of these tips, you can prolong the useful life of your tyres and enjoy a better driving experience along the way.
Tip 1: Check Air Pressure
Your tyres naturally lose a minimum of 1 PSI every month. Over time, this air loss results in two problems: poor tyre handling and wasted fuel. Slime recommends that you check your air pressure with a tyre gauge monthly and top off with air if needed. Be sure to check your tyre pressure when your tyres are cool (Tyres are considered cold when the vehicle has been parked for three hours or more – easy nowadays!). Your vehicle’s recommended tyre pressure can be found on your driver-side door jamb placard or in your owner’s manual.
Tip 2: Clean and Inspect
Take a quick moment to wash any grime, sand or salt from your tyres. Debris and dirt can corrode or damage rims and wheels while your car is sitting dormant. Next, visually inspect your tyres for nails, screws, tears or bumps in the tread and sidewall areas. Finally, check for uneven wear on your tyres that might lead to an emergency flat.
Tip 3: Keep Your Alignment
The front tyres of your vehicle need to be aligned periodically to ensure that there is not an excessive amount of difference in the way the two tyres are pointing. A qualified maintenance facility can measure the amount of tow-in or tow out on your vehicle’s wheels and adjust it according to manufacturer specifications. This prevents excessive and undue wear.
Tip 4: Rotate Tyres Slightly
Tyres don’t like sitting around and are susceptible to a phenomenon called flat-spotting. When all the weight of your car presses down on the same spot, it causes your tyres to flatten where they come into contact with the ground. Flat-spots are usually temporary (the tyre rounds out during driving as it warms up), but can become permanent during long periods of inactivity. Fortunately, there is an easy fix to prevent flat spots: Simply rotate your tyres very slightly. You don’t even need to turn on your car. If it is safe to do so, take your car out of the park and then push it slightly to rotate your tyres to a new position.
Tip 5: Park in the Shade
Tyre rubber is sensitive to UV light and sidewalls are much thinner than the tread area, so try to park your vehicle in the shade or in a garage whenever possible. If long term parking outside is your only option, consider tyre covers or other options to block the sun. Additionally, tyre rubber does not respond well to big temperature changes, and parking in a more temperate spot (such as the garage) will extend the life of your tyres.
TLC for your tyres go a long, long way — literally
We know it doesn’t look easy, and minding all of the above can make you look a little obsessive-compulsive, but if you want to save yourself a ton of trouble, you’ve really got to look after your tyres, especially during the summer season.
Remember those tyre care tips, and you not only save your tyres, but you also save time, money, and yourself from a dangerous blowout.