Improper tyre pressure is a risk to your health and your wallet
The "3xP" Principle – Proper tyres, Professional service and Precise pressure – is one of the most important rules in the case of vehicles. Why? Because the wrong tyre choice, wrong fit or handling, or too low or high tyre pressure, not only result in excessive fuel consumption – and thus higher operating costs. First of all, they are of great importance for the safety of travel.
Nobody will damage our tyres like we or an unprofessional workshop. The number of months spent on a shelf in a store or its model does not have the greatest impact on the life expectancy of a tyre, but too little or too much pressure combined with a very dynamic driving style. One week of driving with insufficient pressure is enough to wear out the tyre as much as 3 weeks of driving with the correct pressure and up to 1 year of correct storage.
The tyres are the only link between the vehicle and the road. This fact, although it seems trivial to many, is not always obvious. As a result, many drivers forget about caring for the wheels – and looking for savings, they choose low or medium quality products. This is a mistake that can cost you a lot, even your life. Too low or too high tyre pressure has its consequences – the tread does not adhere properly to the road surface. If the pressure is too low, the braking distance is longer and the car's grip and maneuverability deteriorates when cornering. Additionally, noise, fuel consumption and car operating costs increase. Too high tyre pressure also reduces traction and accelerates suspension wear. According to Moto Data research, 58% of drivers check their tyre pressure too rarely.
– Driving to the station and checking the tyre pressure does not take more than refueling. The activity that we should do every month is a simple and obligatory point of visiting the station. It is not enough to check the pressure only during the seasonal replacement. We can pay for carelessness in this regard with a serious accident – comments Piotr Sarnecki, General Director of the Polish Tyre Industry Association (PTIA).
Braking distance is only one of the factors influencing by poor tyre pressure. It also causes excessive wear of the inner layers of the tyre. A loss of only 0.5 bar increases the braking distance by up to 4 meters and reduces the service life of tyres by as much as 1/3. This is the effect of increasing tyre deformation and increasing the operating temperature – which can even cause the tyre to burst while driving. This, however, does not appeal to drivers' awareness, as still 58% of them carry out irregular tyre pressure checks. Remember that badly inflated tyres mean bad driving. If the tyre pressure is too low, it drives sluggishly and can pull sideways, and will be very understeering when cornering. In cars with wheels with a tread width to height ratio of less than 55 (the latter number for the tyre size), we also risk destroying the rim when entering the curb and the tyre itself, the side of which is then scissored between the rim edge and the curb or the edge of the hole.
On the other hand, too much air means a deterioration in grip due to the reduced contact surface with the road. and extends the braking distance. Too much inflation also translates into reduced driving comfort, increased noise and uneven wear of the tyre tread. What's worse, it also causes faster wear of the car's suspension – especially pins and rubber bushings.
– Unfortunately, it is impossible to inflate the tyres once and for the whole year. Not in our climate – where temperatures fluctuate a lot. That is why now – when our mornings are much colder than in summer – control is the basis of a well-kept vehicle. When the temperature drops, the pressure in the tyres also drops. Each car owner knows that he must periodically perform a service inspection and technical inspection of the car. Unfortunately, the habit of checking tyre pressure and wear is missing. Often, drivers find out about the need to replace them only at the service point, during a police check or after an accident. It is worth realizing in advance that thanks to this one act, we can avoid the tragedy of life. Therefore, let's take care of our own health and the pleasure of driving our own car – says Sarnecki.
In the case of tyres, it is also worth using a proven service that will safely replace the tyres without damaging them and adjust the pressure accordingly. The Polish Tyre Industry Association (PTIA) together with the independent certification company TÜV SÜD introduced a system of evaluation and awarding professional services based on an independent audit of equipment and qualifications of technical personnel. That is why it is worth choosing workshops with a Tyre Certificate that have been audited and thoroughly checked.
 Moto Data 2017 – Car users panel
Source: Polish Tyre Industry Association