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Dublin: 5°C Tuesday 25 January 2022

How to make sure your tyres are the correct pressure

Don’t risk your safety with incorrect tyre pressure.

Image: Newspress

LAST YEAR A motorist received penalty points on their licence for having under inflated tyres. Not inflating your car’s tyres properly can lead to poor performance as well as an increased the risk to your personal safety when driving.

Under-inflated tyres can affect the vehicle’s braking ability and can increase fuel consumption by 0.3% for every 1 psi drop in pressure.

Over-inflated tyres can lead to uneven wear and can compromise the handling of your car. Meanwhile, correctly inflating your tyres not only increases your safety on the road but can also improve your MPG by up to 3.3%.

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

Best practice is to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines printed on the sticker on the driver’s side door jamb. The pressure measurement may be given in Bar (eg 1.8 Bar) or PSI (eg 30PSI).

Usually, two pressures will be given, one for ‘normal’ conditions and one for when the car is carrying an extra load. and the front tyres may have a different tyre pressure than the rear tyres.

Source: Melanie May

When checking tyre pressure it is best to do it when the tyres are cold. Make sure the handbrake is on and the ignition is off.

First, undo the cap on the tyre air valve. Then hold the open end of the air machine gauge on the tyre air valve and press it firmly for about ten seconds. Look at the air gauge and read the numbers at the red line. This is the current tyre pressure.

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

To deflate and let some air out of the tyres, depress the tyre air valve with the air machine gauge until you hear a hissing sound. Do this in little bursts and keep checking the pressure as you go. Stop when you get to the correct pressure.

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

Instructions are usually printed on the air machines and many garages have digital air machines that allow you input the correct tyre pressure and the machine does the rest of the work. Magic.

READ: Review – the Opel Grandland X is stylish, spacious and well connected >

READ: No more ‘ten and two’ – here’s the right way to put your hands on the wheel >

About the author:

Melanie May  / https://www.melaniemay.com

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