Tyre pressure – you'll find a tyre pressure gauge at nearly all petrol stations. You’ll find the recommended pressure for your particular vehicle (measured in PSI/BAR) either in your owner's manual, inside the fuel tank cover or inside the ledge of the driver’s door.
It’s best to check your tyre pressure when the tyres are cold, as this way you get a more accurate reading.
HOW TO CHECK TYRE TREAD DEPTH? DO THE 20P TEST!
Tyre tread depth – always remember to check the tread depth on each of your tyres. The minimum depth is 1.6mm and you can easily test this by using a 20p coin (the rim is exactly 1.6mm). Place the coin into the tread - if you can see the rim of the coin then the tyre is approaching the legal minimum tread depth and you should consider replacing.
Tyre tread can wear unevenly for a number of reasons but usually associated with suspension or alignment or even as the result of driving on underinflated or overinflated tyres.
Overall condition – a visual inspection is all that's needed here. Have a good look at your tyres:
- Are there any cuts in the side wall?
- Are there any stones or nails etc in the tread?
- It’s hard to see the inside of the tyre sometimes, but if you park with the wheels angled you should be able to see more.
"Potentially dangerous illegal tyres - What does that mean to me though?"
Ever heard of 'AQUAPLANING'? In situations when your tyres have insufficient tread depth to clear surface water on the road, you may experience the particularly hazardous phenomenon of aquaplaning.
In this situation your tyres lose contact with the road surface and travel on top of the water’s surface - and with no contact with the road, you are unable to accelerate, brake or steer effectively, greatly increasing your risk of being involved in an accident.
Independent tests carried out by the Motor Industry Research Association (MIRA) found that a cars braking ability starts to dramatically reduce once the tread depth on the tyres reaches 3mm.
To reduce your risk of aquaplaning, check your tyre tread depth regularly.