Cars are by far the most common vehicles on Britain’s roads so it’s no surprise they are involved in the highest number of tyre-related incidents. Simple maintenance can help avoid a large proportion of these incidents and keep drivers and other road users safer.
Tread depth is important to maintain good grip on wet roads but, as the tread wears down, the tyres will lose the ability of good grip. The ‘20p test’ is a quick way to check the tread depth. Place a 20p coin into the main tread grooves at three points across the tyre and then repeat around its circumference. If the outer band is visible, the tyres may be unsafe or illegal and need to be checked by a tyre professional.
Tyre pressure is equally important. Having the right pressure ensures the car handles as it should, reduces the risk of a sudden deflation and helps keep fuel consumption of the vehicle at its optimal level. The car manufacturer typically displays the correct pressures in the door shut or filler cap, but it can always be found in the owner’s manual or on TyreSafe’s pressure checker. Remember there are two pressures – one for normal loads and the other when fully laden.
While you’re checking pressures, it’s a good opportunity to have a look at the tyre’s condition. Tyres are never manufactured with lumps, bumps or objects sticking in them, so if you see any of these, you’ll need to have the tyre inspected. If objects like stones are wedged in the tread, remove them if you can.