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7 Simple Tyre Tips For Safer Driving

May 3, 2019 / 0 Comments / 33 / Blog

Driving Tips

 

Source: Goodyear

TPMS LIGHT ON? WHAT IT MEANS & WHAT YOU NEED TO DO

February 20, 2019 / 0 Comments / 96 / Blog

The purpose of the Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) is to alert you when tyre pressure is too low and could to create unsafe driving conditions. If the light is illuminated, it means your tyres could be underinflated, which can lead to undue tyre wear and possible tyre failure. It’s important to understand the importance of proper tyre inflation, and how TPMS can help you maintain your tyres.

Maintaining proper tyre inflation is essential to vehicle handling, overall tyre performance, and load carrying capability. A properly inflated tyre will reduce tread movement, reduce rolling resistance, and increase water dispersion. Reduced tread movement gives the tyre a longer tread life. Reduced rolling resistance, the force required to roll a loaded tyre, results in increased fuel efficiency. Increased water dispersion decreases the possibility of hydroplaning.

Both over inflation and under inflation can cause premature tread wear and possible tyre failure. Over inflation can result in decreased traction, premature wear, and the inability to absorb road impact. Overinflated tyres will show premature wear in the centre of the tread. On the other hand, under inflation will cause sluggish tyre response, decreased fuel economy, excessive heat build-up, and tyre overload. An underinflated tyre will show premature wear on both outside shoulders.

The TPMS warning light will help warn you when your tyre pressure is too low. Your TPMS has various illumination patterns that mean different things. Keep reading to find out what they mean.

If you’re learning about tyre pressure sensors for the first time, finding the TPMS indicator on your dashboard is simple. It’s a horseshoe-shaped light with an exclamation point in the centre.

TPMS light

WHAT DOES A TPMS WARNING LIGHT MEAN?

Do you know what to do when the low tyre pressure TPMS symbol illuminates? The first thing to do is manually check your tyre pressures with a gauge and add air until the pressures reach the vehicle manufacturer specification. Keep in mind, your TPMS does not replace routine tyre pressure maintenance. It’s a tool that can help alert you when pressure is low, but a tyre may drop below proper inflation long before the TPMS warning light comes on. The TPMS light comes on when the tyre pressure gets too low or too high.

TPMS LIGHT ILLUMINATES WHILE DRIVING

When the TPMS light comes on – and stays on – at least one of your tyres is at a low pressure level. Check the pressure of all of the tyres with a gauge and determine the cause of pressure loss and add air or service the tyre(s) as appropriate.

TPMS LIGHT GOES ON AND OFF

When tyre pressure(s) are near the level that triggers an alert, fluctuating temperatures may be causing your TPMS light to turn on and off. This typically occurs when pressure decreases overnight due to a drop in ambient temperature that causes the light to turn on; the light may turn off when pressure increases during the day due to rising ambient temperature and/or heat generated from the driving the vehicle. Use a gauge to check the pressure of all of the tyres and add air to any tyre that is low.

TPMS LIGHT FLASHES AND THEN STAYS ON

If the light flashes for approximately 60 to 90 seconds every time you start your car and then remains illuminated, this means the TPMS isn’t functioning properly and you should take it to an automotive service centre for an inspection. Until repaired, the TPMS is out of order and is not able to warn you of low tyre pressure. Check the air pressure of all of the tyres with a gauge and add air to the tyres that need it.

DOES A TPMS REPLACE REGULAR TYRE PRESSURE CHECKS?

No! Understanding what a TPMS warning light means and what to do when it illuminates is an important part of a driver’s responsibility. However, TPMS is not a replacement for regular tyre pressure checks. Why? Depending on the situation, the TPMS may have limitations such as:

  • The TPMS warning light may be set to illuminate below the tyre pressure needed to carry the load in the vehicle.
  • The sensor(s) may not be accurately transmitting tyre pressure data to the on-board computer.
  • The system may not be able to accurately determine if a tyre is too low if other tyres are losing pressure at the same rate.

TPMS overview

Therefore, even with TPMS, manual tyre pressure checks with a gauge are important to caring for your tyres and vehicle, especially for your safety and that of others. You should check tire pressure once a month, and before a long trip or when carrying extra load.

Source: Bridgestone

How to Check Your Car Before a Road Trip

January 24, 2019 / 0 Comments / 103 / Blog

Planning on going on a road trip soon? Before you do so, you should check your car to make sure that it is in good condition and running well. If you spend a little time preparing your vehicle for the trip beforehand, you can avoid most problems that might ruin your fun along the way.

Part 1. Inspecting Your Vehicle

Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 1
1. Look over the vehicle for signs of issues. While there are a number of specific things you’ll want to check for as you prepare your vehicle for a road trip, a general inspection is a great way to identify any issues you might otherwise miss. Check the condition of the windows, the state of the vehicle’s body, and look for anything that stands out as unusual.
Make a note of any issue you spot to be sure you address them before the trip. This first inspection will inform the things you focus on as you continue preparing your vehicle.
Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 22. See if your windshield wipers need to be replaced. Like any part of a car, windshield wipers can wear out from use. They may also simply dry out and crack over time. Test your windshield wipers and make sure they can displace water effectively. If not, they’ll need to be replaced.
Use windshield washer fluid or some water to test the effectiveness of your wipers. If your windshield wipers are visibly cracked, they need to be replaced.
Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 33. Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Driving on underinflated tires can increase the chances that you’ll have a blowout by causing damage to the tire’s sidewall. It will also hurt your gas mileage. On tires installed by the factory, you can find the right tire pressure in the owner’s manual, but you can also find the tire’s pressure rating printed on the side of each tire.
Use a tire gauge to check the tire pressure in all four tires. If any of the tires are low, add air until they’re at their specified pressure rating.
Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 44. Test all of your exterior lights and the horn. Having working headlights and taillights are important for safe driving at night. Be sure your turn signals are functioning and check your license plate light as well. Turn on the headlights, parking lights, and turn signals, then check to ensure each is lighting up as it should. While you’re testing the lights, honk the horn a few times to make sure it works too.
A blown out license plate light may not be dangerous, but it can get you pulled over. If you need to replace a bulb, you can usually access them from the back of the headlight or tail light assembly. Sometimes, you may need to remove screws that hold the assembly in a bracket or to the body of the vehicle itself.
Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 55. Inspect the tread on your tires. Balding tires can be more prone to blowouts and reduce the amount of traction your vehicle has when the roads are wet. Look for signs of damage on the sides of the tire, then use the “penny test” to see if there’s enough tread on the tire.
Place the penny upside down in the groove of the tire and see how much of Lincoln’s head you can see. If you can see further down Lincoln’s head than his forehead, the tires need to be replaced.
Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 66. Check the belts for condition and tightness. Look at the serpentine or accessory belts in your engine (usually located on the front or side) and make sure there is no glazing (shiny spots) or cracking. If there are, the belt will need to be replaced. Then, pinch the belt with your thumb and forefinger and move it up and down to check its tension.
If there’s more than an inch of play in the belt, it may need to be tightened or replaced.
Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 77. Ensure your air filter isn’t clogged. Most vehicles can go tens of thousands of miles without needing to have the air filter replaced, but it’s good to check on the condition of yours before setting out on a trip. The air filter is usually located in the air box attached to the end of an accordion looking plastic pipe often called the intake.
  • Most air boxes are held shut with clips. Remove them to open the box and look at the air filter.
  • The filter should be free of debris and usually white. If it looks particularly dirty, replace it before closing the airbox up again.
Part 2 Addressing Issues that May Arise
Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 81.Resolve any warning lights on your dashboard. If your check engine light is lit up on your dashboard you can use an OBDII scanner to find out what error code has prompted it. Once you know what’s wrong, you can make a plan to fix it.
  • Plug the scanner into the open plastic connector port beneath the dashboard on the driver’s side.
  • If the scanner doesn’t provide an English description with the error code, you can find the corresponding description in a vehicle specific repair manual or often on the manufacturer’s website.

Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 9

2. Check the oil and add more or change it, if necessary. Start by checking the oil by removing the dipstick, wiping it off with a cloth, reinserting it and removing it again. Look at the level the oil reached on the stick compared to the bottom notch (low limit) and top notch (high limit). If it’s low, you will need to either add some or change the oil.

  • Oil that’s in good condition will be translucent and slightly yellow or even greenish in color.
  • To change the oil, slide a container under the oil pan that can capture the draining oil, then unscrew the drain plug (bolt at the bottom of the oil pan). Once the oil has drained completely, replace the plug and remove the oil filter. Install a new oil filter and then add the correct type and amount of oil for your vehicle, based on the information in your owner’s manual.
Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 103. Top off any other fluids that may need it. Most vehicles rely on a number of different fluids and lubricants to run, ranging from coolant to stop the engine from overheating to windshield washer fluid to help wash the bugs away. Use your vehicle’s owner’s manual to tell you where the reservoir is for the windshield washer fluid and brake fluid, the add some if the level is below the lower mark on each reservoir, indicating its low-fill point.
  • Automatic transmission fluid is one of the most important ones to check before a long road trip. Use your vehicle’s owner’s manual to tell you where to find the dipstick, then check it like you would engine oil.
  • Make sure your radiator is topped off as well by comparing its fill line to the lower limit line visible on the reservoir.

Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 11

4. Remove any corrosion on your battery terminals. While it can be tough to spot signs that a battery may go bad, there are things you can do to ensure your battery has a strong connection to the car’s electrical system. Look for a buildup of corrosion on the battery’s terminals, and if need be clean the battery terminals with a mixture of 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of baking soda and 1 cup (250 ml) of water. Mix the two in a bowl, then use a toothbrush to scrub the combination into the terminals.

Rinse the terminals with a damp cloth after you’re done. Check to make sure the strap that secures the battery in place is tight as well.

Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 125. Replace your brake pads if necessary. If your brakes have been squealing or it’s been more than 50,000 miles since the last time you changed them, you may want to replace them before setting out on a long road trip. Access the brake pads by removing the wheels, then the two bolts securing the brake calipers to the vehicle. Slide the brake caliper off of the rotor, then remove the brake pads from the caliper.
Use a clamp to compress the brake caliper piston back into place before you can insert the new brake pads, then reassemble and repeat on the other wheels. You may also want to have your rotors machined or replaced while you do the brake pads.
Part 3 Preparing to DepartImage titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 13Clean out the trash in your car. Going on a road trip means you’ll be spending a lot of time in your vehicle, and you’ll need space to store things ranging from luggage to snacks. Cleaning out your car will not only make the ride more comfortable, it will help you stay organized when you need to find things.
Try to avoid packing things over your spare tire or emergency kit if you can. Setting off with a clean and organized car can give you added peace of mind.
Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 141. Make sure your documents are up to date. To legally drive in the United States, you’ll need to have at least a valid driver’s license and an up to date vehicle registration. Most states also require proof of insurance. Find out what the requirements are where you’ll be traveling, and make sure you meet them.
  • Driving without the appropriate documentation can lead to fines or even having your car impounded.
  • Keep those important documents somewhere you can easily access in case you get pulled over.

Image titled Check Your Car Before a Road Trip Step 15

2. Assemble an emergency kit. At the very least, you should have the tools you need to change a flat tire (emergency jack, tire iron, and spare tire) but you may want to prepare for other potential emergencies as well. Other things you may want are jumper cables, road flares, extra blankets, water, food, rain gear, or a flashlight.

  • It’s also a good idea to carry a first aid kit.
  • You may want to tailor some emergency supplies to your family or time of year. For instance, you may want to carry cat litter to help on slippery roads during the winter.
Source: Wikihow

DRIVING IN WET CONDITIONS

October 15, 2018 / 0 Comments / 150 / Blog

Properly preparing yourself and your vehicle can give you a better driving experience and keep you safe when driving in wet and rainy conditions.

Preparing to drive in wet conditions
Before you head out, be sure to check on the condition of your vehicle and your tyres.

  • Tyres should have plenty of tread depth to evacuate standing water from between the road surface and your tyre. If your current tyres are worn down to anywhere near the wear bars (2.5mm or 3.0mm), it’s time to think about replacing your tyres.
  • Tyre pressures that are too low or too high can lead to reduced traction, premature tread wear, or tyre damage. Check your tyre pressure regularly (at least once a month) to make sure they’re properly inflated.
  • Being able to see the road in wet conditions is critical to a safer driving experience. Your vehicle’s wiper blades should also be checked for age and wear. If they leave streaks on your windshield, it’s time for a change.
  • It’s also important to make sure your vehicle can be seen in wet conditions. Turn on your lights and make sure that all of them are in working order.

 

Tips for driving in wet conditions
When it’s time to head out, keep a few of these tips in mind.

  • If your windows are fogging up, use the air conditioner to dehumidify the air inside of your vehicle. If you don’t have an air conditioner system, wind down your rear windows a little to allow air to circulate.
  • Slowing down on wet roads is crucial. Wet roads give you less grip, increase your braking distance and reduce your ability to properly steer around obstacles.
  • Keep a further distance from the car in front of you since braking distances are longer on wet roads. Staying back also keeps you away from the tyre spray of the vehicle in front, giving you better visibility.
  • Jerky or sudden change in steering direction can lead to loss of control, especially on rain-slicked roads so drive with smoother steering.
  • If the rain becomes too heavy and you are uncomfortable with your visibility, stop! Heavy rain can overload your wiper blades, causing a constant sheet of water to flow over the screen, making visibility close to zero.
  • Initial rainfall makes the road very slippery as the mud and oil on dry roads combines with the water to form a rather slippery layer. You’re likely to experience a loss of control so be extra careful of the first half-hour after it begins to rain.
  • Allow some time for your brakes to dry after driving through standing water by tapping your brake pedals lightly.

 

Source: Goodyear

Functions and Performances of Tires

September 2, 2018 / 0 Comments / 188 / Blog

The four main functions and seven performance characteristics of tires.

Four functions of tires

 To support a vehicles weight                    To transmit accelerating and braking force to the ground

              To support a vehicles weight                     To transmit accelerating and braking force to the ground

To change/maintain direction                   To absorb shock from the road surface

            To change/maintain direction                                   To absorb shock from the road surface

 

Seven performances of tires

Fuel efficiency             Wear life

                        Fuel efficiency                                                                        Wear life

 

Dry grip               Wet grip

                             Dry grip                                                                              Wet grip

 

Handling stability               Ride comfort

                     Handling stability                                                                Ride comfort

Quietness

                           Quietness

Sources: Bridgestone

5 WAYS TO HELP YOUR NEW TYRES LAST LONGER

June 25, 2018 / 0 Comments / 264 / Blog

So you’ve just bought a new set of tyres for your car and you’re ready to hit the road. Before you do that, here are a few things to keep in mind to make sure your new tyres last longer and also keep you and your loved ones safe on the road.

article_5tips_to_help_your_new_tyres_last_v3_03

article_5tips_to_help_your_new_tyres_last_v3_06

Drive smoothly
As simple as this sounds, the way you drive your car greatly affects how your tyres wear and how long they’ll last. Smoother gear changes, gentler braking, acceleration and cornering can all help to prevent unnecessary wear to your tyres.article_5tips_to_help_your_new_tyres_last_v3_09article_5tips_to_help_your_new_tyres_last_v3_11article_5tips_to_help_your_new_tyres_last_v3_13

 

article_5tips_to_help_your_new_tyres_last_v3_15Be aware of where you drive
Another thing that you can do to help prolong the life of your new tyres is to pay attention to the road surface and your surroundings. Whether it’s potholes, uneven roads or even just not parking too close to a kerb, being careful when you drive not only keeps you safe but gives your tyres a longer lifespan too.

 

Keep your tyres properly inflated     If your tyres are under-inflated, they create excess heat and this can lead to blowouts and make them more likely to puncture. Inversely, if your tyres are overinflated, blowouts can happen too due to overpressure and your treads will wear out a lot faster. That’s why making sure your tyres are properly inflated lets them last longer, and keeps you safer.

 

Get your wheels aligned
When your wheels are out of alignment, your tyre treads will wear out unevenly. This makes one part of the tyre weaker and more likely to get damaged. By getting your tyres aligned regularly, you can help make sure your treads wear evenly and last longer.

 

Check your tyres for tread wear
It’s inevitable for the rubber on your tyres to wear off the longer you drive. But what you can do to make sure that the treads wear evenly is to bring them in for check annually. This will not only let you take the necessary actions to prevent uneven tread wear, it also keeps you updated on the state of your tyres and how safe they are.

 

Source: Goodyear

Are Your Brakes Trying to Tell You Something?

May 21, 2018 / 0 Comments / 248 / Blog

If your brakes are trying to tell you something, you should pay attention. A properly operating brake system helps ensure safe vehicle control and operation and it should be checked immediately if you suspect any problems, says the non-profit Car Care Council.

“While an annual brake inspection is a good way to ensure brake safety, motorists should not ignore signs that their brakes need attention,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. “Knowing the key warning signs that your brakes may need maintenance will go a long way toward keeping you and others safe on the road.”

The Car Care Council reminds motorists to look for the following warning signs that their brakes need to be inspected:

  • Noise: screeching, grinding or clicking noises when applying the brakes.
  • Pulling: vehicle pulls to one side while braking.
  • Low Pedal: brake pedal nearly touches the floor before engaging.
  • Hard Pedal: must apply extreme pressure to the pedal before brakes engage.
  • Grabbing: brakes grab at the slightest touch to the pedal.
  • Vibration: brake pedal vibrates or pulses, even under normal braking conditions.
  • Light: brake light is illuminated on your vehicle’s dashboard.

Because brakes are a normal wear item on any vehicle, they will eventually need to be replaced. Factors that can affect brake wear include driving habits, operating conditions, vehicle type and the quality of the brake lining material. Be sure to avoid letting brakes get to the ‘metal-to-metal’ point as that can mean expensive rotor or drum replacement.

 

Source: Car Care Council

Tips to Prolong Your Car Battery’s Life

April 6, 2018 / 0 Comments / 264 / Blog

The first thing you should know is that a car battery’s lifespan is fixed and there’s nothing you can do to extend it beyond that. But, there are things drivers often do that cause the battery to die early. Learn how to care for your battery and be rewarded with a long battery life.

1. Limit short rides

Shorts distance trips prevent your car’s battery from a full charge cycle. Over the long run, this will reduce the charge capacity of the battery and its lifespan. Instead, go for a long distance drive once a week during the weekend to give the battery a full charge it deserves.

2. Once a month routine inspection

Battery terminals corrode over time, but keeping them clean from buildup is a great way to extend the life of your car battery. Scrub the terminals with a toothbrush dipped in a baking soda and water mixture. Then, using a spray bottle with cold water, rinse the mixture off and follow up with a thorough drying with a clean cloth.

3. Don’t use electronics when idle

Turn off functions like the radio or air conditioner when your engine isn’t running to put less wear and tear on your battery power. Extended periods of idling also can wear a battery down. And not to forget, don’t charge your smartphone before starting your car’s engine.

4. Keep Your Battery Tightly Fastened

A battery that’s not securely fastened could end up vibrating, potentially resulting in internal damage and short circuits. Have your battery terminal checked regularly, especially if you frequently drive on bumpy roads.

5. Check your car’s alternator

If your alternator is bad it will results in ineffective recharging of your battery and dramatically shorten your battery’s lifespan.

 

Source: Carput

Tyre Pressure

March 8, 2018 / 0 Comments / 344 / Blog
Maintaining the correct tyre pressure will help to extend the life of your tyres, improve vehicle safety and maintain fuel efficiency.

Car tyre pressure is measured by calculating the amount of air that has been pumped into the inner lining of your tyre in pounds per square inch (PSI) or BAR pressure.

The manufacturer of your vehicle will specify the suitable pressure for your tyres, and it is your responsibility as the driver to make sure that the pressure is checked and corrected on a regular basis. We recommend doing this every two weeks to ensure optimum tyre pressure.

Tyre Pressure

Under inflated tyres

Tyres can quickly become underinflated if you don’t check them regularly. Under inflated tyres will have uneven contact with the road and will exhibit excessive wear on the inside and outside edges of the tread if they are left underinflated for some time. Not only does low tyre pressure wear your tyres out more quickly but you may also experience increased rolling resistance with the road which means reduced fuel efficiency and increased CO2 emissions.

Over inflated tyres

Putting too much air in your tyres can be just as damaging and costly. Over inflated tyres will have a smaller contact patch – the part of the tyre that makes contact with the road – which can lead to a loss of traction and poorer braking distances. Overly high tyre pressure will also cause heavy and uneven wear across the central part of the tyre leading to shorter tyre lifespans than if it was correctly inflated.

Correct tyre pressures

It’s not always apparent that air is being lost from your tyres, but it generally escapes at the rate of up to two PSI of air every month. More air is usually lost during warm weather, so more regular checks are needed when temperatures rise.

You can find the recommended tyre pressure for your vehicle in your vehicle handbook or printed either in the sill of the driver’s door or on the inside of the fuel tank flap. Your vehicle manufacturer may suggest different tyre pressures for your front and rear tyres so make sure you aware of these guidelines.

 

Sources:KwikFit

Tyre Rotation Advice

January 4, 2018 / 0 Comments / 499 / Blog

Rotating your tyres periodically can help to prevent uneven wear and prolong the lifespan of your tyres.

 

Rotating Tyres: Best Practise

When should you rotate your tyres? Generally speaking, it is recommended that you rotate the tyres on your vehicle once every six months, or 6,000 miles – whichever comes first.

To do so, each tyres need to be removed and refitted at a different position. This helps to ensure that each tyre wears evenly and lasts longer.

For each driving method, there is a correct way to rotate your tyres. You want to ensure that you rotate the tyres to the correct position for your vehicle.

 

Rotating Tyres on a Front Wheel Drive

tyre-rotation-fwd

The two front tyres stay on the same of the car and are transferred to the rear. However, the rear tyres move forward and switch sides.

 

Rotating Tyres on a Rear Wheel Drive

tyre-rotation-rwd

The two rear tyres stay on the same side of the car and are transferred to the front. However, the front tyres move backwards and switch sides.

 

Rotating Tyres on a Four Wheel Drive

tyre-rotation-4wd
In this instance both sets of tyres swap sides and position. So the two front tyres move back and switch. At the same time the two rear tyres move forward and switch.

 

Rotating Directional Tyres

The above rules should not be followed if your tyres are ‘directional tyres’. The tread pattern on this variety tyre is designed specifically to work in a certain way in relation to its position on the vehicle – switching sides would be dangerous.

tyre-rotation-directional
The tyres change position, but do not switch. The two front tyres move back and the two rear tyres move forward – they stay on the same side of the car as before.

 

Source: blackcircle.com

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