We all know how frustrating it can be when one of your tyres fails, particularly whilst driving. Generally speaking, taking appropriate precautions to maintain your tyres can significantly reduce the risk of failure, saving you money and preventing any accidents that can happen as a result of a damaged tyre.
To ensure you don’t get caught with a flat, we have highlighted everything you need to know about looking after your tyres, including the various types of damage, what causes them and how you can prevent them.
Types and Causes of Tyre Damage
Tyre damage can happen at any time regardless of the age of your tyres, that’s why it is essential that you check them on a regular basis and before you set off on a long journey; these checks should include tyre pressure, tread and any signs of wear and tear. The most common types and causes of tyre damage include:
Types of tyre damage
Punctures, Cuts & Lacerations
Can happen as a result of driving over sharp objects, pothole damage or fitting protruding bodywork parts i.e. splitters, modified bumpers or mudguards.
Cracks, Bulging, Irregular Tread & Camber Wear
Cracks, bulges and irregular tread and camber wear can occur for several reasons including the age of the tyre, improper inflation, excessive weight, driving over sharp objects, potholes or other rough surfaces, kerbing and braking too harshly.
Overinflating your tyres can cause significant wear to the sidewall, so it’s important to know what the recommended tyre pressure is, which will be listed in your vehicle’s handbook.
Having your tyres come in contact with spilled oil, petrol or other concentrated substances may weaken the tyre’s outer wall, causing the tyre to wear more quickly.
If you notice any of the types of tyre wear stated above, we strongly recommend that you have them checked or replaced at your nearest garage right away. As well as improving the overall lifespan of your tyres, keeping on top of any damage will reduce the risk of an unexpected breakdown.
Quick and Easy Tyre Maintenance Check
Are you caring for your tyres the right way? Here’s a little guide to help you carry out a full tyre maintenance check:
Check tyres at least once a month for excessive wear and damage
Make sure that the tread doesn’t wear below 1.6mm using the 20p coin trick
Ensure that your tyres are inflated to the recommended levels by checking the pressure
It may be tempting to go for the cheaper set of tyres at first but beware, this could end up costing you more as cheaper tyres are generally of lower quality, meaning they will be more prone to damage and won’t last as long.
More importantly, before you purchase a new tyre, you need to make sure that it matches the specifications outlined in your vehicle’s handbook or tyre sidewall. Here are some tips to help you save money by choosing the best tyres first time round:
Tyre Size – What Do the Numbers Mean?
The required tyre size for your vehicle can be found in either your vehicle’s handbook or the sidewall of the tyre. It looks something like this: 195/50 R15 92H. But what does this mean?
Specifies your tyres current width.
Aspect Ratio (Profile)
The ratio of your overall tyre width. It is important to remember that a low-profile tyre has shorter side walls which aren’t as flexible as regular profile tyres. Shorter sidewalls increase your road holding, grip around corners and are considered to improve the look of your car. However, low profile tyres are generally more expensive than regular profile tyres.
The diameter of the rim which the tyre is to be fitted to, in inches.
Load Rating Index
Indicates the maximum load that each tyre can support.
Speed Rating Index
The speed rating indicates the maximum speed at which the tyre can carry a load corresponding to its load rating.
Quality vs Price
After you have identified the right size of tyre for your vehicle, it is important to take into consideration the quality of the tyre and whether it will best suit your driving needs.
If you don’t drive often and predominately drive on city roads, you may find that a budget/economy set of tyres is suitable.
However, if you drive regularly and drive along rugged country lanes, you will find that spending a bit more money on a premium set of tyres will be a benefit in the long run.
It is important to note that 4×4’s, Cars, Vans, Camper Vans and Electric/Hybrid vehicles all require a different set and type of tyres, so remember to double check your vehicle’s handbook or consult with a professional.
Most UK drivers tend to keep the same set of tyres all year round, however, you may want to consider investing in winter tyres or all-season tyres for maximum performance and improved grip on the road all year round.
Tyre Repairs and Replacement at Autocare Centre Chepstow
At Autocare Centre Chepstow, we offer a Tyre Repair and Replacement Service, so you can have complete peace of mind that your vehicle is in safe hands. For more information on our Tyre repair and replacement service, call us on 01291 627137, or fill out our contact form.