With the Easter holidays fast approaching, now’s a great time to give your tyres that all-important “once over” to ensure they’re ready and prepared to take you wherever you’re planning to go. Here are some tips to make sure you’ve got all your bases (and your family’s safety) covered when it comes to your tyres!
- How’s the tread looking?
It’s a fact! Regardless of what type of vehicle you’re driving, your tyres are the only thing between you and the road – so keeping an eye on how the tread is wearing is vital for good grip and safety. While the minimum legal requirement is that your tyres have a 1.5mm tread, it is highly recommended that you have at least 3mm. If the tread indicators (the small rubber blocks across your tyres) are level with the rest of the tyre (or coming close), your tyres will need to be replaced. If you’re in any doubt, visit a tyre specialist who will be able to do an exact measurement as to how your tread’s tracking.
- Are there signs of cuts or damage?
Have a good look for any signs of damage, cuts or evidence of a nail or other sharp object (such as a stone) that may have become embedded in the rubber. Sometimes you don’t get any warning of these unfortunate events, however being able to get any damage repaired before it becomes a flat may minimise the necessity to replace the tyre and save you money and the inconvenience of a flat over the holiday season.
- Have you checked your spare?
These days with “Run Flat” tyres being used on many vehicles, you may not have or need a spare tyre. However, if your car does have a spare, make sure that you check this before you go on a trip so that it’s usable if it is needed in an emergency. Ensure it’s correctly inflated and that the overall condition is up to scratch.
- Correct inflation is key!
Taking the time to check your tyre pressures is extremely important – and always remember to do this while the tyres are still cool, BEFORE you set off on a journey. The information you’ll need regarding the right pressure for your tyres will either be on the inside of the driver’s door – or in your vehicle owner’s manual. Both under- and over-inflated tyres can pose a risk to safety, leading to reduced grip, the increased possibility of aquaplaning and impacting your ability to control the vehicle. Correct inflation has other advantages too – such as more even tread wear and greater fuel efficiency – so doing this check is really worthwhile time spent!
- Towing a caravan, trailer or boat?
If you are towing or your vehicle is just carrying a heavier load than usual (which is often the case when your car is all packed up for the holidays) – your tyre pressures may very likely need to be adjusted. Check your vehicle owner’s manual for details.