10 Tyre Checks to Keep you Safe this Tyre Safety Month

Make sure your tyres are legal and safe this Tyre Safety Month with our top 10 checks.

1. Tyre Tread Depth

Tyre tread is the patterned rubber which covers your tyre and over time, it will begin to wear away. A tyre will start its life with roughly 8mm of tread and are deemed illegal once they reach 1.6mm. If you are caught driving on tyres that do not meet this legal requirement you could face a £2,500 fine and penalty points.

Although the legal minimum is 1.6mm, a tyre’s gripping abilities and wet weather resistance will begin to reduce at 3mm, so Setyres would recommend replacing your tyres at this point. Learn how you can check your tyre tread with our helpful guide.

2. Tyre Pressures

Maintaining the correct tyre pressure, as specified in your vehicle handbook, is essential for keeping you safe on the road. Under-inflated tyres tend to handle poorly and use more fuel, whereas over inflated tyres have a reduced contact patch, meaning that grip and stopping distances can be affected.

Check your tyre pressures every three weeks when your tyres are cold to ensure that they are correct.

3. Irregular Wear

Over time, tyres will wear, however, uneven wear indicates a problem. If your tyres are more worn on either the left or the right, then your tyre is not maintaining optimal contact with the road when driving.

If you do notice that your tyres are wearing irregularly, this could indicate incorrect wheel alignment, over or under inflated tyres or problems with your suspension. Visit a tyre specialist to have the cause of wear diagnosed correctly.

4. Types of Tyre

Tyres fitted to the same axle must be of the same construction and this is so important that it could cause you to fail your MOT test if yours do not. Mixing different constructions and patterns can have a negative impact upon handling and grip, meaning that your performance may be compromised.

If you are not sure whether your tyres are of the same structure and fitted correctly, visit your local Setyres branch where one of our trained tyre specialists will be able to tell you.

5. Cuts and Tears

Cuts and tears can be a symptom of general driving wear, but if you notice them you must have them checked over by a tyre specialist. Larger cuts or any damage which leaves the tyre ply exposed could be extremely dangerous, so we would advise that you do not drive on this type of damage.

6. Lumps and Bulges

Lumps and bulges on the tyre indicate deformation of the tyre rubber and this means that the structural integrity of the tyre is compromised. This is extremely dangerous and you must have your tyre checked over by a specialist as soon as possible.

7. Foreign Objects

Foreign objects, such as nails or stones, can become lodged in the tyre and cause damage such as punctures. Whilst sometimes these objects can be removed, you should always have any foreign objects in the tyre looked over by a specialist as removing them could cause damage.

8. Age

Most tyres will wear before they have the chance to age, however, you should pay attention for any cracks, which indicates that the rubber has aged.

9. Tyre Repair

If you suffered tyre damage on the road how would you fix it? If you’re not sure, now is the time to find out! Check your boot to find out if your vehicle has been supplied with a tyre repair kit, a spare tyre or look at your tyres to find out if they are run flats.

Make sure you know how to use whatever you’re equipped with and if you find that you don’t have a back-up, decide which is the best option for you, and invest in your chosen means of tyre repair.

10. Spare Tyre

If you are carrying a spare tyre, you must ensure that it is in good condition and ready to use in an emergency! You should check that it has an adequate level of tread, has no signs of damage and is inflated to the correct pressure.

If you don’t know how to change a spare tyre, now is a good time to learn! Watch videos and read guides so that you are well equipped should the situation arise!

Learn more about caring for spare tyres.

For further information on maintaining your tyres and ensuring that they are legal and safe, take a look at our helpful guides. For further guidance, contact your local Setyres branch where our tyre specialists will be happy to answer any queries you may have.

Posted on: 14/10/2016

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