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  • Tyre Centre FAQ's

    Maintaining correct tyre pressures 

    There are three main reasons why maintaining the right tyre pressure is important: 

    Correct tyre pressure can help to extend the life of your tyre, improve vehicle safety, and maintain fuel efficiency. Pressure is measured by calculating the amount of air that has been pumped into the inner lining of your tyre in pounds force (PSI) or BAR pressure.

    The manufacturer of your vehicle specifies the suitable pressure, and it is your responsibility to make sure that the pressure is checked and corrected on a regular basis, at least every couple of weeks.

    There are three main reasons why maintaining the right tyre pressure is important:

    Tyres that are under inflated can overheat; and over inflated tyres can lead to poor vehicle handling on the road.

    Over or under inflated tyres suffer more damage than those with the correct pressure and need to be replaced more regularly. Vehicles with under-inflated tyres have increased rolling resistance that require more fuel to maintain the same speed.

    Correct tyre pressures help to maintain optimum fuel efficiency. This can equate to lower Co2 emissions coming from your vehicle than those with incorrect tyre pressures and that must be good for the environment.

    It’s important to check tyre pressure regularly. It’s not always apparent that air is being lost, but it generally escapes at the rate of up to two pounds of air every month. More air is usually lost during warm weather, so more regular checks are needed when temperatures rise.

    Look for the tyre pressure recommended for your vehicle in your vehicle handbook or within the technical information usually found on the inside of your vehicle’s front right-hand door or fuel tank flap.

    Always check the tyre pressure with a tyre pressure gauge when your tyres are cold. Finally, if you are using your vehicle to carry additional load or weight, always consult your vehicle handbook for the correct loaded tyre.

    Looking after tyres 

    We recommend you check your tyres for pressure and damage every 2 weeks.

    Check for external damage
    Cuts, lumps, and bumps are often caused by an impact between the tyre and a kerb, pothole, or object in the road. If your tyre has any of these symptoms then you must have the tyre checked as quickly as possible by a tyre specialist, as this type of damage can result in sudden tyre failure.

    Wheel alignment too is a very important step in maintaining and prolonging the life of your tyres. Kerbing or potholes affect your vehicle’s wheel alignment settings which can lead to rapid or un-even tyre wear. The car manufacturer will set your vehicle’s wheel alignment at the factory, so after driving it’s worth a regular check to help prevent premature tyre wear, generally caused by incorrect wheel alignment setting.

    Also, emergency braking can sometime leave your tyres with a ‘flat spot’. It is always recommended to have your tyres checked if the vehicle has been involved in an emergency manoeuvre like sudden and heavy braking. If you have any concern or doubt about the condition of your tyres, please ask a specialist for advice as soon as possible.

    It’s a driver’s responsibility
    UK law requires that your vehicle is fitted with the correct type and size of tyres for the vehicle type you are driving and for the purpose it is being used. This means fitting the right tyres, and for safety ensuring that they are inflated to the manufacturer’s recommended pressure.

    So, there are many different reasons for tyre wear. Your tyres don’t just get worn through age and use, but through emergency braking, under-inflation or over-inflation and can be easily damaged by poorly maintained roads. And if your wheels are misaligned, one edge of the tyre can wear more rapidly than the other.

    UK tyre law

    • The legal limit for minimum depth of the tread on your tyres is 1.6 millimetres, across the central ¾ of the tread around the complete circumference of the tyre.

      For safety reasons it is recommended that you replace your tyres before the legal limit is reached. Many vehicle manufacturers recommend replacing at 3 millimetres. At 1.6 millimetres in wet weather, it takes an extra two car lengths (8 metres) to stop at 50 mph than if your tread was 3 millimetres.

      A regular check of your tyres can help you to avoid 3 penalty points and £2,500 in fines for having tyres worn beyond the legal minimum limit on your vehicle.

      It is also a legal requirement to ensure that tyres of different construction types are not fitted to opposite sides of the same axle. The two main tyre types are radial and cross-ply, and these must not be mixed on the same axle.

      Mixing brands and patterns of the same construction type is permissible depending on the vehicle type and manufacturers recommendation. Check your vehicle’s handbook for tyre fitment details.

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