Tire pressure is something that much like checking your engine oil or pumping your own gas you should know how to do yourself. With modern cars monitoring these aspects of our vehicles more and more we’ve found many people don’t understand the importance of checking them and if something goes wrong with the vehicle sensor an individual doesn’t know where to start.
Do I need to Check My Air Pressure?
Air Pressure sensors on modern vehicles can be finicky at best and tend to make drivers numb to the warning light. Low air pressure on your tires can lead to uneven tread wire, fuel mileage, sidewall damage, or even worse; a total failure of the tire. If you have an older vehicle without a sensor you must be diligent in checking your air pressure as you’re the last line of defense for your tires.
How Often Should I check My Tire Air Pressure?
We suggest checking your air pressure once a month or at the very least once every oil change. If you’re in a climate with large swings in temperatures make sure you check the pressure when the temps drop. Large changes in climate can potentially cause you to lose a few pounds of air or more. You should also make it a good practice to walk around your car at every fuel fill up and visually make sure none of the tires look low in air or have any debris stuck in them.
How Do I tell What the Correct Air Pressure Is for My Vehicle?
Checking your tire air pressure is one thing, but knowing how much your tires need is another. There are a few places you can find this information. If your vehicle has the factory size tires and wheels on it you can check in the owners manual or if you open the drivers door it will be inside the door jamb on a sticker that gives the load ratings for the vehicles and tire pressures. If you’re already at the tire checking the pressure you can also read the sidewall of the tire. All manufacturers are required to print the optimal tire pressure on the sidewalls of the tire. You can often find it near the tire size. We do not recommend overfilling tires as it can cause premature wear and damage to your tires.
How do I check My Tire Air Pressure?
Check tire air pressure on your vehicle is easy. You will need a air gauge to check the pressure to begin with. Air gauges vary in quality, size, and accuracy greatly. A simple pencil shaped gauge will get you by in a pinch but can become sticky or read poorly over time. The upside is that they are small, light, and inexpensive. For a little more money you can get a much more accurate air gauge that has a needle and actual gauge to read the pressure. The last option if you might have a way to fill the tires is to get a combo air gauge and inflator. These will allow you to fill, bleed, and read air pressure all in one tool. All of these should be kept in your vehicle at all times so you can check pressure on the fly. Checking your pressure is as simple as removing the valve stem cap and clipping or pressing your air gauge onto the valve stem. You should see the gauge move after a second or two and when it reaches its highest reading that is your air pressure. Most vehicles have an optimal tire air pressure of 32-35PSI.
Hopefully this article gave you some insight into how important tire pressure is on your vehicle. You can find all of your essential automotive maintenance tools and supplies at Eastwood HERE.