22 Apr

Looking After Your Cars Tires

A piece of advice that I’ve always taken to heart when looking after a car was ‘always look after your breaks and tires’. Sound advice as these are obviously two of the most important pieces of safety equipment on any vehicle, and are relatively inexpensive to care for.

To ensure that your tires are always in tip-top condition I suggest you check your tire pressure regularly. It is important that tires are inflated to the correct pressure to ensure the best grip on the road. Remember over-inflated tires will wear more in the center of the tire, whereas under-inflated tires have a tendency to wear more on the outside of the tire. Always check your tire pressure before long trips and make sure the spare tire is in good condition and properly inflated in case of an emergency.

It is also advisable to check your vehicle owner’s handbook for the correct tire pressure for your car in different circumstances. For example, tire pressure can be different if carrying heavy loads or towing trailers for example.

Always check for uneven wear and tear of the tire. As stated previously it is important that the tire is correctly inflated, but other causes of uneven wear include wheel alignment issues. In these instances it is always advisable to have your local garage check out the vehicle.

All tires have tire tread wear indicators, small rubber markers in the tread to show you the minimum depth that your tires tread should be. If you are nearing these markers, its time to replace the tires.

In general it’s always advisable to slow down when going over pot-holes, or try to avoid them if you can. This goes for curbs as well. This will help you increase your tire’s life, reduce the chance of disturbing the alignment of your wheels and generally avoid accidental damage to the tires.

22 Feb

How Inflation Can Save You Money

Many Americans suffering from sticker shock at the gas pump could get an additional 10 miles out of every fill-up. In fact, American motorists could save more than $1.1 billion in unnecessary fuel costs.

One of the fastest, easiest and least expensive ways to improve a vehicle’s gas mileage is through proper tire inflation. An underinflated tire doesn’t roll as smoothly and the increased resistance requires more energy, robbing the vehicle of fuel efficiency. Yet one in every three cars in the U.S. has at least one underinflated tire, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Underinflated tires cost the country more than 3.5 million gallons of gasoline each day. The average driver could improve gas mileage by 3.3 percent by simply keeping tires inflated to the proper pressure. For the average 15-gallon fuel tank, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) statistics suggest, that’s a savings of about $1.50 on every fill-up.

To help, the experts at The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company have developed a few more easy gas-saving tips:

Replacing a clogged air filter can improve mileage by as much as 10 percent.

Don’t overload your car. An extra 100 pounds reduces fuel economy by 1 or 2 percent, says the DOE.

Use the grade of motor oil recommended by the vehicle manufacturer. That can improve gas mileage by a percent or two, the DOE adds.

Keep your car properly tuned. That can improve gas mileage an average of 4.1 percent.

Make sure your gas cap is on tight and not damaged. Some 17 percent of the vehicles on U.S. highways have either misused or missing gas caps, causing 147,000,000 gallons of gas a year to vaporize into the atmosphere, reports Service Tech Magazine.

Avoid quick or “jackrabbit” starts and stops. Aggressive driving wastes gas and can reduce your gas mileage by 33 percent on the highway and 5 percent in the city. Observe the speed limit; gas mileage decreases rapidly above 60 miles per hour.

To maximize fuel economy and also improve tire performance and efficiency, Goodyear is offering free inspection of tires-regardless of brand-at any of its 750 company-owned and at participating independently owned and operated Goodyear locations across the country. If tires are underinflated, they will be filled at no charge. No appointment is necessary.