Hankook has got the bit between its teeth when it comes to ensuring owners of horseboxes and trailers make sure their tyres are safe and legal.
After the tyres manufacturers recent partnership with the Royal International Horse Show at Hickstead earlier this month it has revealed some worrying concerns over the tyre maintenance of these vehicles.
According to the company, last year alone tyre failures accounted for approximately 30 per cent of all horsebox breakdowns at the roadside, many of which could probably have been avoided. I
No in an effort to raise standards of tyre maintenance amongst the horse riding community, Hankook has published the following advice:
Inspect your tyres: Before setting off on any journey make sure you inspect your tyres for any damage and wear such as cuts, bulges and cracks.
Maintaining the correct tyre pressure: Ensure you regularly check your tyre pressures as this can cause irregular wear, reduced grip to the road, heavy steering and increased fuel consumption. It is advisable that you check your tyre pressures weekly or before you embark on a long journey. Make sure you do this when your tyres are cold so you receive an accurate reading. You can find the correct tyre pressure in the manufacturers log book or by visiting your local tyre dealer who can provide you with advice accordingly. It is also worth noting that trailer tyres often require an increased tyre pressure than that of a lorry or car.
Tyre tread: The deeper the tread the more grip you have to the road. For vehicles and trailers up to 3500kg (gross vehicle weight) the legal limit for minimum depth of the tread on your tyres is 1.6mm across the central ¾ of the tyre width. For all vehicles above this weight including horseboxes the minimum tread depth is 1mm. It is however recommended that you replace them before they reach this stage of wear as the performance of the tyre will be reduced significantly.
Spare tyre: Often, one of the main problems can be found with the poor maintenance of the spare tyre. Usually this is placed hidden away and can deteriorate becoming useless when it is called upon for use. Having a well maintained spare tyre can help to avoid unnecessary waiting at the roadside as those without must then quickly locate an appropriate tyre.
Overloading: Your tyres bear the whole weight of both your vehicle and its load. It is very important to ensure that you are not overloading your vehicle or trailer and that you are distributing the load evenly. Overloading has the same effect on your tyres as under inflation, causing rapid wear of the tyre and increased fuel consumption.