What’s the best thing about summertime? It has to be all the smashing road trips you get to take to far-off wondrous places.
What’s the worst thing about summertime? Not doing proper tire inspection and getting stuck on the side of the road flagging some kind soul who knows how to change a tire or has cell reception in that isolated area. No matter what you are up to this summer, if it’s a staycation or a long road trip to ALL the national parks, you absolutely cannot forget about tire safety. Keep reading for some tire maintenance tips that will keep you from pulling your hair out on those long lonesome drives.
1. Check Your Tire Pressure Regularly
Let’s face it, your days are as packed as a can of sardines. There’s barely enough time somedays to go to the toilet. BUT, despite this busy schedule, you will need to add checking tire pressure into your to-do list.
Do it at least once a month and absolutely before every road trip. Check the tire pressure when the car is cold, that is, hasn’t been driven in 3 hours, to get an accurate reading.
Also, don’t forget to replace missing valve caps without delay and screw them up properly after checking tire pressure.
2. Are Your Tires in Alignment?
Nowadays you have to worry, not only about your chakras being aligned in yoga class but also about your tires being in alignment with each other. Remember all those times you swerved to avoid some wildlife or another vehicle, and bumped up against the curb, or drove right over a pothole (or a hundred).
Well, every time you do this, your tires run the risk of losing alignment. And this can cost you – not only by reducing your gas mileage but also by causing uneven and rapid tread wear. This will mean you have to replace your tires more often and take your wallet out more often at the gas station.
Avoid all this by paying attention when driving, and not texting, eating, or fiddling with the radio when on the road. Not only is this illegal in some countries now, but it’s dangerous for your loved ones and your vehicle’s health.
3. What’s Your Tire Tread Like?
When was the last time you looked at your tires? That is, really looked? Do you know what your tire tread is like?
Without proper tread depth, you cannot avoid hydroplaning or skidding, both of which are likely in inclement weather or on long road trips along not-so-ideal roads.
You can use a penny to check your tire’s tread. Place the penny upside down into your tire’s tread groove and if you can still see all of Lincoln’s (or whatever dead President’s) head you need new tires.
4. Ensure You Have All the Same Tires on Your Vehicle
Have you ever glanced through your vehicle’s owner manual? If not, it’s time to pull that thing out and start reading through it. It will give you a clear indication of what kind of tires to use on your vehicle.
Also, when you change up your tires, ensure that you use the same kind of tire on all your wheels. Mixing and matching only works in your summer wardrobe, not when it comes to your tires.
5. Don’t Pack on the Pounds
Do you tend to overpack when you go on vacations, using only 10% of the clothes you packed, but insisting that you needed everything? Well, avoid that habit when you are going on road trips
because the more you pack your vehicle to the gills, the more likely it is that your fuel economy will tank and your tire life will reduce.
Your handy owner’s manual will let you know what is the maximum weight your vehicle can bear without any negative consequences.
6. Always Carry a Spare on Those Long Road Trips
Do you have everything but the kitchen sink packed into your trunk when you go on road trips? Well, unload some of those items and carry a spare for your vehicle instead. Also, just like you would inspect your vehicle’s tires before every road trip, you need to do the same for your spare tire.
Make sure you check its tread and tire pressure. Tires have a shelf-life too, so if you have been carrying the same spare since times gone by, then you will need to replace it with a new one.
7. When Was the Last Time You Rotated Your Tires?
You can check your vehicle’s owner manual for what the ideal tire rotation mileage would be. But if you can’t find that information in there, the guidelines indicate doing a tire rotation every 5000 to 8000 miles.
A tire rotation can extend your tire’s life by evening out the tread wear.
It might be another annoying thing to worry about and add to your daily to-do list, but it will pay huge dividends over time to your tire’s longevity and your wallet. Not interested in doing it all yourself – check out Ozzytyres.com.au. They have tire inspection packages and other tire-related services to help you take care of your tires even when you can’t be bothered.
Tire Inspection Goes With Road Trips Like PB&J
The long road beckons you and despite wanting to run off into the wind like heroines in romance novels do, you take a deep breath and do a tire inspection first. That way you won’t be crying on the side of the road as bears and other dastardly creatures lie waiting in the darkness as you pray for someone to pass by and help you fix your tires. Happy road tripping!
Did you enjoy this article? If you did, then keep browsing our website for other awesome articles on auto and travel.