Where the Rubber Meets the Road: Tire Safety

When it comes to protecting oneself on the road, quality auto insurance in Orlando is critical (not to mention required by law). Also intrinsic to one’s safety is vehicle tires. Just think, the combined and substantial weight of the vehicle and everything within it is supported only by the four tires and the air inside them as they contact the road. Thus, it makes sense to ensure they are maintained properly.

Tires are more than just rubber

From budget brands to high-end beauties, today’s typical tire is comprised of more than 100 separate ingredients, including natural and synthetic rubber, polyester, petroleum derivatives, nylon, steel, carbon black, silica, and many other items. Manufacturers blend these components along with tread patterns to create end products that enhance the vehicle’s operation and offer a variety of performance behaviors on the road.

Check regularly, the right way

The first and foremost safety tip: The air pressure should be checked at least once each month, but preferably at each gasoline fill-up. It’s important to use a pressure gauge to check the PSI (per square inch) pressure matches that on the sidewall of the tire. A visual inspection is not reliable, as studies show that a tire can be dangerously underinflated—by as much as 50 percent–before it is noticed visually. That degree of underinflation makes tires ripe for damage and, ultimately, failure; in fact it is the leading cause of tire malfunction. What’s more, rolling without sufficient air diminishes gas mileage, estimated by as much as three to five cents per gallon.

Second, remember to rotate tires every 5,000-8,000 miles. This will help prevent early and uneven wear on tread. This will in turn allow for replacement of worn-out tires after they have seen their full service life, rather than having to replace them early because they are worn unevenly—bald in spots, nearly unscathed in others, simply because the driver left them in the same position for too long. It’s literally throwing money away.

Purchasing auto insurance in Orlando is one of the first things to secure when obtaining a vehicle. After that, make it a priority to check out everything where the rubber literally meets the road.


photo credit: Daniele Zanni cc