All Woman

Car tyre maintenance tips

Monday, July 15, 2019

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WE see it every day, motorists neglecting their tyres to the point where the wires become visible.

However, auto mechanic and car enthusiast Dermaine Johnson says poorly maintained tyres can be dangerous, not just for you and your passengers, but also for other motorists and pedestrians.

“The tyres on a vehicle are arguably one of the most important parts of a motor vehicle. They have a number of important functions, such as transmitting traction and braking forces to the road surfaces, absorbing road shocks, and changing and maintaining vehicle direction during travel. When you neglect your tyres and fail to maintain them, their ability to meet these functions is compromised, making your vehicle a hazard,” Johnson explained.

To reduce the possibility of accidents, ensure that your tyres are able to effectively carry out their various functions. Also, to avoid unnecessary car-related expenses, Johnson shares some routine tyre-related maintenance practices that you will need to follow.

Inspect your car tyres regularly

When you have a motor vehicle you need to be vigilant. When you are driving, your tyres will come in contact with a number of things, outside of poorly maintained roads, which could cause significant damage to them without you knowing.

“Regularly inspecting your tyres, which I do once daily or once every other day, depending on how much I use my vehicle, will increase my chances of identifying problems early before I have to fork out big bucks,” Johnson said.

Ensure proper tyre pressure

The amount of air in your car tyres matter. Johnson said if the tyres are without the right air pressure, the performance of the car can be significantly affected.

“Apart from vehicular performance, underinflated tyres is also associated with higher fuel consumption, so you want to make sure that the air pressure is good. I would suggest that you check the air pressure every five to 14 days just to be sure, and top up with air as needed,” Johnson recommended.

Consider your carload

Stop carrying around so much junk in your vehicle, especially when these things are heavy.

“When you overload your car it affects your tyres. Carrying the weight of the car alone is enough weight, so applying excessive and additional weight will not only eventually result in your tyres being destroyed, but even before this, you will experience other challenges such as overheating,” Johnson cautioned.

Avoid driving fast

Try to always stick to the speed limit, not just for your safety, but also to reduce the wear and tear on your tyres.

“Driving at a high speed, especially when you are on a highway, might feel great when your car is in great shape, but high velocities damage the tyres of your vehicle. Therefore, to prolong the lifespan of your tyres considerably, you need to drive at a moderate speed,” Johnson advised.

Rotate your tyres

You can move your tyres from one position to another, for example, move the rear tyres to the front and vice versa. Johnson said this will prevent uneven wear and tear on your tyre tread.

“So, since the front of the car tends to carry more of the car's weight, as expected, then those tyres would wear about twice as fast as rear tyres. Your car's manual should give some recommendations on how often you are required to do this, but once to twice per year depending on usage should be good,” he said.

Have your tyres professionally assessed

You should get your tyres professionally assessed, especially if you don't know how much longer they would function effectively.

The specialist will check for things such as the depth of the treading, which is very important because it is crucial for safety.

“Car treading does a number of things, such as help remove water between the tyre and road, ensuring the car remains under control, and preventing the risk of aquaplaning. As such, you want to make sure that it is where it needs to be effective. Otherwise, you will need to have them replaced,” Johnson advised.

Align the wheels

Wheel alignment is where the wheels and axles are properly aligned on a vehicle. This process is usually done by a machine operated by a specialist, and is recommended at least once yearly.

Johnson said that wheel alignment is important to tyre care because it protects tyres against wearing too quickly. There are also other benefits, such as protecting the bearings and suspensions.


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