On par with wearing a seatbelt and following speed limits, driver safety goes hand-in-hand with tire maintenance.
To highlight the importance of routine tire safety practices, Pirelli supported the U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association’s (USTMA) annual National Tire Safety Week campaign. The goal of this initiative was to further educate drivers on the importance and simplicity of everyday tire maintenance as a part of general road safety.
As the only part of a vehicle that truly touches the road, tires are a critical part of road safety and a priority for anyone getting behind the wheel. And with more drivers are hitting the road this summer, Pirelli shares some very simple but essential steps to take into account behind the wheels:
- Check tire inflation pressure at least once a month before embarking on a long-distance road trip. Underinflation can lead to tire failure.
- Monitor your tire inflation pressure during periods of fluctuating temperature and seasonal shifts. Pressure can change by 1-2 pounds for every 10 degrees of temperature change—increasing in warm weather and decreasing in cold weather.
- Check the alignment of your wheels as specified by your vehicle manufacturer’s owner manual or take note if your vehicle is pulling to one side when driving. This can indicate a misalignment of wheels in the front or rear that causes uneven and rapid treadwear. Visit your local tire dealer to check and correct alignment issues as needed.
- Rotate your tires every 5,000 (8,046 km) to 8,000 (12,874 km) miles, or at the distance specified by your vehicle manufacturer’s owner manual.
- Keep an eye on your tire treads, as traction and resistance to hydroplaning, particularly in bad weather, are reduced as tires wear. Tires should be replaced when the tread is worn down to 2/32 of an inch. To test tread depth, place a penny upside down into a tread groove. If part of Lincoln’s head is covered by the tread, you’re driving with the proper amount of tread. If you can see all of his head, a new tire is needed.
“How we treat our tires is reflected in the ability to drive safely and have fun on the road,” said Ian Coke, Chief Technical Officer, Pirelli North America. “All it takes is a handful of routine vehicle checkups, similar to filling your tank or getting an oil change, to ensure that your tires are well equipped to get you where you’re going.”
To check out more about National Tire Safety Week and additional recommendations from the USTMA, see here.