The tires on your car are the most important of all the many components, as the section of tire that meets the road surface is your only contact with the ground, and the handling properties of the vehicle will ultimately depend on the tires. Driving entails dealing with many different environments, and it is important to have a set of tires that can handle any road surface and condition that you are likely to encounter.

The Tread

This is the part of the tire that makes contact with the road and there are usually a series of grooves, cut in a particular pattern, and this allows excess water to be forced away, keeping the tire firmly in contact with the road. Driving too fast through even shallow water can cause something called “aquaplaning”, which happens when a thin layer of water forms between the tire and the road surface. This is very dangerous, and while the car is aquaplaning, you will have no control whatsoever, and your vehicle could easily get into a spin. Worn tires lack traction and should be changed before the tread gets down to a critical level. As a guide, there should be a minimum of 5mm depth in the tire tread, and any less than that is not considered safe.

Correct Inflation

Tires are filled with air and the correct PSI value would be in the vehicle owner’s manual. Remember to add 5 PSI in the rear tires if you are carrying a heavy load, and the correct tire pressure is a vital part of good handling. Under inflation will increase fuel consumption and the tires might become very hot, especially on a long journey. It is recommended to check the tire pressures weekly, or prior to any long journey, and don’t forget the spare wheel, as you never know when you might need that. Too much air is also dangerous and could cause the tires to explode, and if in wet conditions, expect to lose some traction. Hard tires also make for a less comfortable ride, so make sure they are inflated to the correct pressure.

Online Solutions

There are many companies that supply tires, and with online solutions, you can easily compare prices before buying. You can find the top brands of tires including Bridgestone, Continental and Pirelli, all at affordable prices, and if you need any advice about what brand is best, the tire company could make suitable recommendations.

Aging Tires

If a person does not use their car very much, the tires might reach an age where the rubber no longer performs as it should. The tread might be fine, but old tires can easily be ruptured and if your mechanic recommends a change, it makes sense to follow his advice.

There is no other component in your car that is connected to your safety as much as the tires, and for this reason, one must always inspect the tires on any vehicle prior to driving.