Check Your Tire Pressure
Driving with adequately inflated tires is not only important for safety matters, but for those economic as well. Driving with underinflated tires decreases your fuel economy. Simply put, you can log more miles if your tires have the recommended amount of air in them. To make sure your tires are adequately inflated, you will need two things: a tire gauge and knowledge of your tires recommended pressure per square inch, or PSI. Follow these simple steps to ensure you have enough air in your tires.
- To measure the PSI in a tire, you will need that tire gauge we talked about. Push the part of the tire gauge that fits onto and slightly into the air valve of the tire. Hold the gauge on the valve for approximately one second. (One Mississippi?)
- A meter with what looks like ruler marks will spring out of the opposite of the tire gauge. Make sure you do not move the meter, as doing so will result in an inaccurate reading.
If your car is underinflated, you will need to add air. Note how much air needs to be added, and fill your tire to the recommended PSI. If your car is overinflated, you should take some air out. You can do this by placing the tire gauge on the tire's air valve. Hold the head-on the valve until you hear a hissing noise. Don't worry, that is just air escaping the tire. Check the gauge again and add or remove air until the tire gauge reads that your tires are properly inflated.
- Note: The recommended PSI will depend on the size of your tire, so if you drive a truck, you may find that the recommended PSI is close to 80. If you drive a smaller car, you will likely need to inflate your tires to between 20 and 30 PSI.
- Note: You can inflate your tires with different devices. Inflating your tires with a bicycle pump will be a longer process because bicycle pumps are not designed to inflate wheels on a car. They can, but an industrial strength air compressor is a quicker way to inflate tires. You may have one, but if you do not, almost every gas station can accommodate your needs. You usually have to pay a dollar in quarters to use it, but it is a quicker alternative to using a bike pump.