As South Africans get set for six weeks of increased seasonal travel – tyre manufacturer Goodyear has issued a reminder that correctly inflated tyres can save significantly at the pump and even more. It also promotes safety, even tyre wear, enhances ride comfort and it maximises fuel economy.
Goodyear’s Automotive Engineering Manager, Peter Henning said running a tyre just 20 per cent under-inflated could increase fuel consumption by as much as 10 per cent.
“An under-inflated tyre deflects more energy, increasing rolling resistance and robbing the vehicle of fuel efficiency. At today’s fuel prices, and especially during this holiday season when people generally travel a lot further, 10 per cent is a considerable and unnecessary expense that could be saved by a little more fresh air!
“As well as being heavy on your pocket, running under-inflated tyres also reduces their tread life which means they will need to be replaced sooner than should be necessary. Plus it can be dangerous – studies show that 87 per cent of all flat tyres have a history of under-inflation,” Henning said.
Statistics also reveal that one in every three cars has at least one under-inflated tyre and, while nearly seven in ten drivers say they wash their vehicles every month, barely more than half check tyre pressure in that period. The majority of drivers (71%) forget to check the pressure in their spare tyre at all.
Dean Roberts, a spokesman for Mastertreads, which has been successfully servicing motorists in the Western Cape region for more than 50 years, said that, in the interests of safety, their outlets offer free tyre inspections. Mastertreads’ expert technicians will add air, when it is needed, as a complimentary service.
Hi-Q Managing Director Sean Harrison said that, over time, even normal driving conditions affect steering and suspension, which, in turn, impacts a vehicle’s wheel alignment.
“All four wheels, plus the spare tyre, should be professionally inspected before a long trip. Modern, well-equipped stores like Hi-Q use electronic four-wheel alignment machinery, which is both more efficient and more accurate.
“The best time to check the pressure is when the tyres have had a chance to cool down, not when they are warm as some people believe. The correct ‘maximum’ inflation pressure is to be found on the sticker on the driver’s door, the fuel door, or inside the vehicle manual under ‘recommended inflation pressure’,” Harrison explained.
Trentyre, Hi-Q and Tirepoint stores have a massive national footprint – with branches in both big city suburbs and small towns. All these one-stop fitment stores offer puncture repair services and stock a full range of passenger and recreational tyres.
“Keeping tyres properly inflated promotes safety, helps tyres wear evenly, enhances ride comfort and maximizes fuel economy,” confirmed Trentyre Operations Director, George Vlok.
“All too often, motorists do not take the time to check those four pieces of rubber that connects them to the road. Remember, the contact area between you, your family and the road is only the size of the palm of your hand … not very much!
“We strongly encourage South African motorists to have their tyres checked for tread depth, inflation pressures, balancing and alignment before taking off on your journey. Any one of the nearly 80 Trentyre stores around the country will be glad to assist. We want everyone to have a safe journey and a great vacation,” said Vlok.