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How 'run flat tyres' let you keep driving with a puncture

And what do you need to know?

Image: Newspress
RUN FLAT TYRES are specially designed tyres that enable you to continue driving when you get a puncture on your vehicle.
Run flat tyres feature reinforced sidewalls that continue to support the vehicle, for a limited distance, in the event of air loss.

Around 14 per cent of new cars come with run-flats as standard. They are an alternative to carrying a spare wheel in the boot. Run flats will be fitted in conjunction with tyre pressure monitor systems (TPMS).

If you do get a puncture, a warning light will appear on the dashboard to alert you to the situation. You should also be able to feel the car behaving differently while you’re driving.

If you get a puncture in a run flat tyre, you don’t have to immediately change the tyre, which is handy if you are driving at night, on an isolated road or don’t know how to change a tyre. You can actually continue driving for a short period with the puncture, which will hopefully enough to get you home or to a garage.

You must drive at a reduced speed and this varies from manufacturer to manufacturer so check the manual for guidelines. For example, Bridgestone DriveGuard run flats allow drivers to continue driving for a distance of 80 kilometres at speeds of up to 80km/h even with complete air pressure loss.

Whilst run flat tyres can provide piece of mind and added safety when driving, they do cost more than the ordinary equivalent. Furthermore, some run flats cannot be repaired if the sidewall is damaged and most manufacturers recommend getting a new tyre if a puncture occurs.

READ: Easter egg hunt: 7 secret features hidden in cars >

READ: You should always reverse into a parking space – and here’s why >

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About the author:

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

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