With the summer holidays around the corner, getting your body in shape is top of mind for many South Africans at the moment.
But while you’re busy watching your figure, spare a thought for your vehicle and especially your tyres, which need to be kept in shape too.
Here are some tyre safety basics to look out for, thanks to Tiger Wheel & Tyre
:1. Take note of your tread
We all have a favourite pair of shoes that we wear until the soles have eroded beyond recognition of their former glory. Just like the soles of your shoes, tyres have tread that wears down with driving.
The more worn your tyres, the less traction and grip you will have on the road, meaning your braking distance will increase and you are more likely to skid when driving in the rain.
In fact, the legal tread depth limit in South Africa is a minimum of 1mm across the entire circumference of the tyre. Not sure whether you are legal, ask a wheel and tyre professional to point out the tread wear indicators on your tyres.2. Under pressure
Wearing shoes that are too tight or too loose can be fashion suicide or just plain unpleasant. The right tyre pressure can also be the difference between life and death.
Don’t assume the pressure is two bars which a lot of people do when we chant “two please” to the friendly petrol attendant. Each car comes with recommended pressures which you will find in the sill of the driver’s door or inside the fuel cap.
Rather take the time to check these and make sure the pressure is just right. Over inflated tyres erode quickly at their centre, while under inflated tyres wear on the outsides quicker. Under inflated tyres overheat easily and can cause tyre bursts which is notorious for road fatalities.3. The other tyre
Before you get on your way, also check that you have a spare tyre and that it is inflated to the right pressure, and has the right amount of tread – at least 1mm – for a safe journey.
If your car is fitted with run-flat tyres you won’t have a spare, see “Run-flats vs Normal” below.4. Balancing act
Staying in your lane is a basic rule, but neglecting the balancing and alignment of your wheels can make you lose your step. If your car is shaking or pulling to one side while driving, you need to get your wheels balanced and aligned.
Sometimes it’s very subtle so make sure you check your wheel balancing and alignment every 10 000 kms or before every major trip. This not only improves the handling of your car but also extends the tread life of your tyres.
The more care you take to look after your tyres, the longer they will last which means you have more money to spend on your summer holiday.
These are just some of the basics for keeping your tyres in check and staying safe on the roads. Now, Tiger Wheel & Tyre makes it easy to keep both your car and yourself in shape with a new promotion that offers benefits for both.
For more information visit, Tiger Wheel&TyreKnow the difference:Nitrogen vs Air
Tyres run cooler which means they last longer. Tyres running on nitrogen don’t lose pressure as quickly as tyres inflated with air. Inflating your tyres with nitrogen can extend tyre life by up to 20%.Run-flat vs Normal
Run-flat tyres are designed to continue driving after the tyre has been punctured so that you don’t have to stop at the side of the road and put on a spare. Run flat tyres should not be repaired.Heavy load vs Light load
Heavy loads put extra strain on your tyres, so if your car is jam-packed with luggage make sure you adjust the tyre pressure. Tyre failure can occur due to overloading, so check your owner’s manual for recommended tyre pressures for “heavy loads” before you pack everything but the kitchen sink. Follow Women24 on Twitter and like us on Facebook.