In the hustle and bustle of daily life, it’s easy to forget the little things. Laundry, cleaning out the refrigerator, and reading all that mail can easily take a back seat to the more important things, like picking up junior from school, getting to work on time, and making sure that the water bill gets paid. But sometimes something gets put on the back burner that really shouldn’t. That’s right, we’re talking about checking the pressure in your tires.
The process is really simple, and anyone can do it. All you need is a tire pressure gauge, which costs about $3 at your local gas station and 3 minutes. Simply find the valves stems on each tire, remove the cap, and use the gauge, just like you would on a bicycle tire. That will give you an accurate measure of how much air your tires have.
So, why is something so easy so often overlooked? Well, how many times have you checked the soles of your shoes? Dollars to donuts, you only look at them when there is a problem. It’s easy to forget about checking up on your tires, but the consequences of under-inflated tires can be pretty bad.
At best, under-inflated tires will give you worse fuel economy. When the tires don’t have the air pressure that they were designed to, they get sluggish, and your car won’t handle as well, accelerate as fast, or stop as quickly. The worst case scenario is that you may have a premature blowout, or have the tire peel itself off of the wheel in a tight turn, either of which can be disastrous.
But what about Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems (TPMS)? While those are a great driver’s aid, they don’t do a perfect job of keeping up to date on how your tire pressure is doing. Those sensors can fail, and they are subject to changes in climate, the temperature of the tires, and a lot of other factors that could affect their measurements. They can keep you appraised while you drive, but they are no substitute for regular tire pressure checks.
The best idea is to check the tire pressure every month. If a tire is low or too high, then you can easily put air in if you have an air compressor, or just at the filling station. If it’s too high, then it’s simple to let a little air out. With the right pressure your tires will perform better, which will make your whole car drive better.
Check your tire pressure every month! It can save you money and a lot of piece of mind knowing that you are riding around on safe rubber. If you don’t want to check them yourself, come and visit us—we’d be happy to help!