Car maintenance is a must for drivers who want to ensure a safe ride. You change the oil, check the fuses, and ensure your lights are in working order, but none of that matters if your vehicle’s tires are failing. Before you embark on your next road trip, check out the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Tire Safety Checklist, as well as our top 5 tips for better tire safety.
Check the Tread
You might notice that small tread indicators are built into the tread of your tire. These raised sections are built lower than the outermost area of your tire. Once the top of a tread indicator is even with the tire edge, it is time to replace the tire. An alternative way of checking your tire tread is taking it to a professional for inspection or turning a Lincoln penny upside down inside the grooves of the tire to ensure the tread covers all of Lincoln’s head.
Check the Pressure
Many vehicles are equipped with tire pressure monitoring systems, but pressure gauges are very affordable and can be purchased at nearly any service station. For the most accurate pressure reading, check your tires after your vehicle has been idle for several hours. Be sure to write down the pressure of each tire and compare it to the correct tire pressure recommended in the owner manual. If you have no manual, you can often find the recommended tire sizes and pressures on a sticker on the inside of the driver’s door. If the pressure is too high, carefully release some of the air by pressing on the edge of the tire valve. If it is too low, add air to the tire at a service station. Re-check the pressure to ensure it is even and appropriate for each tire.
Check the Spare
It’s easy to remember to check the tires on your vehicle, but what about the extra one you carry around with you? Perhaps you don’t have to worry about uneven or excess tread wear, but you should be concerned with tire pressure in case of an emergency. That last place you want to find out about a low spare tire is when you are changing out a flat on the side of the road.
Rotate Your Tires
Tire rotation is an easy way to ensure your tires are wearing evenly when you drive. Front, back, and side tires all take repeated pressure in different ways. This can cause the tire tread to wear unevenly and force you to replace tires more often. To prolong tire life and reduce your risk of an accident, have your tires rotated every 6,000 miles. Many service stations, garages, and dealerships offer free tire rotation when you purchase an oil change.
Inspect Your Tires for Debris, Cracks, and Other Problems
Tires take a beating every time you drive your vehicle. They often pick-up glass, debris, and other objects that could be hazardous to their integrity. If you accidentally hit a curb, you might notice a crack or even a missing valve cap. Take an extra minute when inspecting your tires to check for debris and other problems that could lead to tire failure.
Bonus Tip: Choose Tires Appropriate for Driving in Green Bay
The climate here in Green Bay can be hazardous for driving. From snow and ice to wet weather and extreme cold, make sure your tires not only fit your vehicle but also fit your surroundings.
At Pagel & Associates Insurance Agency, we enjoy helping our customers learn ways they can be safer drivers. One of the most important ways we help protect drivers is by offering car insurance that protects against many different hazards – including accidents caused by tire failure. For more information or to request your Green Bay car insurance quote, contact our office. We look forward to serving you soon.