Protection against avoidable breakdowns and crashes - Improved vehicle handling - Better fuel economy - Increased tire life... Just a few of the reasons to take five minutes every month to check your tires! Proper tire safety requires specific attention to tire inflation pressure, tread depth, and general condition of the tires. Over-inflated tires run the risk of explosive decompression (they may pop). On the other hand, under-inflated tires have a higher rolling resistance and suffer from overheating and rapid tread wear particularly on the edges of the tread. Excessive tire wear will reduce steering and braking response, and tires worn down past their safety margins run the very real risk of rupturing. Vehicle and tire manufacturers provide owner's manuals with instructions on how to properly check and maintain the tires on your specific vehicle.
Tires are designed and built with great care to provide thousands of miles of excellent service, but for maximum benefit they must be maintained properly.
You can find the numbers for recommended tire pressure and vehicle load limit on the tire information placard and in the vehicle owner's manual. Tire placards are permanent labels attached to the vehicle door edge, doorpost, glove-box door, or inside of the trunk lid. Once you have located this information, use it to check your tire pressure and to make sure your vehicle is not overloaded, especially when you head out for road trip.
Tires have built-in tread wear indicators that let you know when it is time to replace your tires. These indicators are raised sections spaced intermittently in the bottom of the tread grooves. When they appear even with the outside of the tread, it is time to replace your tires. You can also test your tread with a Lincoln penny. Simply turn the penny so Lincoln's head is pointing down and insert it into the tread. If the tread does not cover Lincoln's head, it is time to replace your tires.