Thursday, May 03, 2007

Today's blog entry is brought to you by the letter "O". Oh! An "O" looks like a tire! More words of wisdom from Pa. The price of wisdom is old age so I may as well share. I just checked Buffy's tires before she heads out to California and was shocked to find her front tires had 15 pounds of pressure in them. VERY dangerous. I think "Smokey" had around the same when I checked it last week. You should check your tires probably monthly. Buy a $2 tire gauge from Walmart. On the side of your tire it lists the maximum pressure. Usually from 32 to 44 lbs. My years of driving has taught me that it's best to keep the tires up to the maximum. Why? Tire wear and gas mileage. Both are optimized at maximum pressure. You can run at around 5 lbs below without problem if you want a smoother ride but be aware that tread wear and mileage will suffer a little. The max pressure on both Smokey and BJ's tires is 44 lbs. Running these at 15 - 20 lbs will severely wear out the outside edges of the tires in a hurry, and cut your gas mileage in half, but the worst part is that hitting even a small rock or something going 60 MPH on such underinflated tires could cause them to blow the edge seal (tubeless tires) and cause a wreck. Also, make sure your tire valves all have valve covers. Without a valve cover, little rocks & dirt can (will) get in the valve and cause it to leak. Don't trust tire places to put the right pressure. I've observed them "eyballing" it on my tires. They do tires all day, every day, and think they can guess when the right pressure is reached. They usually are quite a bit off from my experience. The also have an interest in underinflating your tires a little since they give a more comfortable ride (happy customer) and make the tires wear faster (you'll have to buy more tires) Check your own pressure.


Chad said...

Brigham - You also might want to check the van's tires for wear. When I was filling them up (Steve thought they were low, but they were fine), I noticed one looked like it was significantly older than the other three. I don't know if it's a problem or not.

Marilyn said...

I am grateful for my wonderful hubby who takes care of such things. Thanks hon.