Thursday, July 4, 2024

Check Your Tire Pressure!

Happy Independence Day! Which just happens to fall on the fourth of July.

My wife got a new car. It's a PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle) which is great for her because she normally just drives around town but occasionally goes farther. She can run on electricity in town but has a gas engine if she needs to go farther than the battery can take her.

The car comes with an app for her phone and she was showing me stuff in the app and I noticed the tire pressures were over 50 psi. I wondered if that could be correct. Maybe hybrids have higher tire pressure to reduce rolling resistance. But, no. She checked the sticker on the driver-side door frame, and the correct pressures were 32 in front, 35 in back. 

I don't know if it came from the factory at 50 psi (I doubt it) or the dealership did that (probably). But that was ridiculous. (Some mechanics will fill the tire to its maximum pressure, not to the correct pressure.)

Correct tire pressure will give you longer tire life, better handling, and better gas mileage.So the first thing we did the next morning was set the tire pressures at the right level.

Listen folks: set your tire pressure. Buy a good tire pressure gauge and use it:

1) at least once a month

2) after getting any tire work done (new tires, rotation, etc.)

3) apparently now, after buying a new car. Or at least new to you car.

4) after getting maintenance done by anyone. Anyone.

Check tire pressures in the morning before you drive the car at whatever the ambient temperature is. Try to do it in the shade so heat from the sun isn't warming up the tires. If your tire pressure is high, let some air out. If it's low, unless you have a source of compressed air at your house, you'll need to go somewhere to get air. This will skew your readings but it's better than nothing.

Here is more information about tire pressure.

But please, check your tire pressure.

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