Pressure is the force that an element exerts on a surface; it can be a gas, a liquid, or a solid. Specifically, when we talk about tire pressure, we mean the air that keeps them inflated. This pressure can be measured in kg / cm², PSI (pounds per square inch), or bars.
What Should My Tire Pressure Be?
It is essential to know because excess or lack of air can cause accidents, loss of money due to breakdowns, or poor fuel economy of your car. The recommended tire pressure varies according to the weight and size of the car and is indicated by the manufacturer of the car. For this, you must look at the vehicle manual, on the side of the driver’s door, or the fuel tank lid. In these places, you can find the optimal tire pressure for driving under normal conditions and cases where you have a lot of loads.
When to check tire pressure?
The pressure in the tires will naturally vary due to their use or the weather conditions outside. It is recommended to check the tire pressure at least once a month, and always before special occasions such as starting a long road trip or when you are going to transport a lot of cargo.
How to verify that you have the recommended tire pressure?
These are the steps to follow and their recommendations.
- The tires should be cold and should not be exposed to direct sunlight, as heat can increase their pressure, and extremely cold weather can cause them to drop.
- You should have the manual handy to identify the optimal pressure for the tires, both front, and rear. This will indicate the minimum amount of pressure that cold tires need to support the car under normal conditions and with many loads.
- Use a reliable meter. Remember that in-service station use is free, or if you want, you can buy an air meter in the market.
- Take the reading for each tire and check them against the information in the manual. For this, you must first remove the plug at the end of the air valve, then put the meter on the valve stem and press quickly and firmly down until you no longer hear the air that is Escape and see that the meter shows the reading.
- Adjust the pressure to match that recommended in the manual.
- If you want to lower the pressure, let a little air escape by pressing the valve as many times as necessary until the measurement equals the recommended one.
- If you need to increase the pressure, you must use an air compressor to inflate the tire. Put the cap back on the valve tightly and repeat the process on all the tires when you’re done. Don’t forget the spare tire.
Now that you know how much air pressure a car tire needs, it is wise to learn the benefits of driving with adequate air pressure.
What are the benefits of having properly inflated tires?
Knowing how and when to check your tire pressure will bring you several benefits.
- Safety: you will be avoiding accidents since low pressure can increase stopping distance and make it difficult to control the direction on wet surfaces or with little grip.
- Save money: your tires will wear more minor, and you won’t have to change them for new ones in no time. You will also be using less fuel, as the tires will slide easily on the asphalt and travel more distance with less effort.
- More comfort: since you will be driving without friction, deformation, little or many grips, slipping, and other problems that cause insufficient pressure.
- Caring for the environment: by using less fuel, buying fewer tires, and generating less friction heat on the road, you will be contributing to the care of the ecosystem.
For this and much more, it is so important to check the pressure of your tires. Take care of yourself and those around you.