Tyre pressures should be checked once a month

Many find checking tyre pressure a tedious task, but this check should be made approximately once a month. Tyre pressure affects the cost-effectiveness of driving – if the pressure is too low, the rolling resistance increases which in part increases fuel consumption.

In summer, many people pack up their car for their summer trip. Tyre pressures should be checked before setting off on a journey instead of, say, after the first 300 kilometres, since the tyres should be fairly cold when the pressures are checked. As the tyre temperature increases by 10 °C, the pressure increases by 0.1 bar. The reverse applies to the winter. If the car is in a garage at a temperature of 20 °C and the outside temperature is –20 °C, the difference in the pressure is as much as 0.5 bar.

The correct tyre pressure significantly prolongs tyre life. Various car manufacturers give their own recommendations for tyre pressures that are based mainly on handling properties and driving comfort. The correct tyre pressure is important, as if the pressure is for example 20% too low, the tyre life is shortened by 50%. Thus the effect is significant. Generally, tyre pressure should be approximately 0.2-0.3 bar higher in winter tyres than in summer tyres. Driving conditions in the winter require steady driving.

There are also safety issues connected to tyre pressures, since too low a pressure is one of the main causes of tyre damage. If the pressure is too low, the tyre warms up more easily, because the strain generates heat and this means that the tyre breaks up more easily. If the tyre pressure is too low, the braking distance becomes longer and the performance of the tyre becomes unpredictable. If the tyre pressure is too low, the tyre also wears unevenly.

Too high a tyre pressure does not cause similar risks, but it affects driving comfort. Generally it can be said that a tyre won’t break with too high a pressure.

  • Tyre pressure should be checked once a month.
  • Too low a tyre pressure increases the rolling resistance and thus increases fuel consumption.
  • Too low a tyre pressure also affects tyre life and driving safety.

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