All tire manufacturing companies advise to inspect your tires every month or before any long road trip because they know their products need close attention to avoid damage or misfunction.
When it comes to tires there are certain things you need to keep in mind.
First: Checking tire thickness. You don’t need special equipment for doing that. A penny can do the job. Grab a penny and put it into tread grooves across the tire in a way Lincoln’s head pointing down into the tread. If you see the top of his head, it means it’s time for new tires but if the top of his head disappears between the ribs it means you still have time before getting a new tire.
Do this for all tires each time you do the inspection. Sometimes a tire seems fine but when a penny is placed between the tread ribs, we realize the tread depth is not as enough as it seems.
Second: Check various places around each tire. Don’t only check top of the tire like most people. Bend a little and move the penny in the grooves. Sometime the thin part is not where you think.
Third: Tire depth is not the only thing needs to be taken care of. Tire pressure is as important as it’s thickness. If a pressure gauge is available remove the valve cap from tires and place the gauge on the valve stem and press down, then read the number. If you don’t have a pressure gauge, use your own senses. Press the tire with hands and see if it is firm or not. A soft tire should be inflated immediately. Don’t risk your safety and others by driving with low tire pressure.
Inspecting tires doesn’t finish before driving. You need to keep an eye on them while you are on the road too. If you feel any abnormality while driving such as steering noise pull over and look at your tires again.
Always keep things in balance. An overinflated tire can be dangerous too. It can cause blowout or negatively affect braking distance.
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