Check your tyre pressure and avoid having a ‘bad air day’

02 October 2017
Checking the depth of a tyre's tread with a 20p coin

​Drivers in Northamptonshire are being encouraged to avoid having a ‘bad air day’ by regularly checking their tyre pressure as a national safety campaign backed by the county’s award-winning Safer Roads Alliance kicks off.

October is Tyre Safety Month, an annual initiative run by charity TyreSafe with the aim of getting motorists into good tyre safety habits including making checks for condition, tread depth and pressure at least once a month.

The Safer Roads Alliance, which earlier this year won a prestigious TyreSafe award, is now an official partner of the campaign and will be carrying out a range of tyre safety-related awareness work across the county from 1 to 31 October.

Kamila Poole, of the Safer Roads Alliance, said: “The air pressure in your tyres has a decisive influence on the way your vehicle accelerates, brakes and corners, and reduces the risk of a sudden deflation.

“Safe tyres with the correct pressure are able to work the way they are designed to, keeping both you and other road users safer. Regularly checking the air pressure can also save you money by making each tank of fuel go further.”

Stay safe and save money

Research by the charity has shown 35 per cent of tyres are underinflated to at least 8 psi (pounds per square inch) below the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendation.

It also showed that in the last year alone British drivers wasted £600m worth of fuel by driving on underinflated tyres. This also affects tyre condition, with every 10 per cent of under inflation increasing wear by 10 per cent.

Kamila said: “Regularly checking the condition of your tyres and making sure your tread depth is legal is also vital for keeping you safer on the roads, so our Tyre Safety Month work is all about helping motorists know what to look for and what to do if they find a problem.”

As part of Tyre Safety Month, Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service is hosting a free tyre checking event at the Mounts Fire Station in Northampton on Saturday 7 October from 11am to 3pm.

TyreSafe tips for checking your tyres

  • The 20p test is a quick way to check tread depth – place a 20p coin into the main tread grooves at three points across the tyre then repeat around its circumference. If the outer band of the coin is visible, the tyres may be unsafe or illegal and should be checked by a tyre professional.
  • Most manufacturers display a vehicle’s correct tyre pressures inside the filler cap or driver’s door pillar as well as in the owner’s manual.
  • Different figures are given for normal loads and when fully laden.
  • While you’re checking pressures, look at the tyre’s condition. If you see any lumps, bumps or objects stuck in your tyre, you need to get the tyre inspected.
  • If objects like stones are wedged in the tread, remove them if you can.

Find out more about TyreSafe and Tyre Safety month.


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