When the rubber hits the road
TYRES are one of the
most important components of a car, yet many drivers tend to overlook its
The vehicle's weight, plus turning and braking forces, are all
transmitted to the road through a patch the size of a man's palm.
Since tyres are exposed to the elements and are subjected to a multitude
of stresses, it is important to inspect your tyres at least once a month,
and before any long distance travel.
For a start, inspect the tyres for tread wear. Worn tyres will suffer
from reduced performance in braking and cornering, especially during rainy
conditions where there is a higher risk of skidding.
All tyres come with read wear indicators, which appear in the main
grooves of the tyres when the tread has worn down to 1.6mm. When this occurs
it is important that the tyres are replaced as their ability to disperse
water effectively is compromised.
If there are any signs of damage or cracks on the tyre, have it checked
by a tyre technician immediately as the structure and durability of the tyre
could be affected.
Also ensure that your tyres are inflated to the correct pressure, tyre
pressure information can usually be found printed on the driver's side
doorsill. It is important as a little difference in tyre pressures levels
can make a huge difference in performance.
Under inflated tyres wear out more rapidly, affect the control of your
vehicle, increase braking distances, and consume more fuel. Over inflated
tyres will reduce grip, braking stability, and can lead to poor handling.