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How To: Make sure your tyres are at the right pressure

Check your car’s tyre pressure at least once a month and before long trips. We show you how.

Image: Newspress

CORRECTLY INFLATING YOUR vehicle’s tyres will optimise its performance as well as increase your personal safety when driving.

It is recommended that you check your tyre pressure once a month.

But how do you know what is the correct pressure? Well, it will be written in your car manual or printed on the driver’s door pillar or on the inside of the fuel tank flap.

Usually, two pressures will be given, one for ‘normal’ conditions and one for when the car is carrying an extra load.

Source: Melanie May

The front tyres may have a different tyre pressure than the rear tyres.

The pressure measurement may be given in Bar (eg 1.8 Bar) or PSI (eg 30PSI).

To check tyre pressure, do it when the tyres are cold.

Source: Newspress

First, undo the cap on the tyre air valve.

If using the air machine in a garage: press the open end of the air machine gauge on the tyre air valve and hold it there firmly for about ten seconds. Look at the air gauge and read the numbers on the red line. This is the current pressure of the tyres.

If this number is higher than the recommended pressure, your tyres are overinflated and if this number is lower than the recommended pressure, then the tyres are underinflated.

Source: Newspress

To deflate your tyres, depress the tyre air valve with the air machine gauge until you hear air hissing out. Do this in little bursts and keep checking the pressure as you go.

To inflate your tyres, press the air machine gauge into the tyre air valve and hold it flush and steady and pump the gauge to fill the tyre with air. Again, keep checking the pressure as you go and stop when you get to the recommended pressure.

Here’s a video demonstration:

Source: In Shot Productions/YouTube

If in doubt, instructions are usually printed on the air machines. Many garages also now have digital machines that let you type in the required pressure and the machine does the rest of the work.

READ: What’s the best way to handle tailgating? >

READ: Dear Driver: when can children go in the front seat? >

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