With the price of petrol smashing through the 140p-a-litre barrier for the first time, it’s worth remembering that properly inflated tyres increase fuel efficiency.
If your tyres are inflated to the correct level you can save yourself pounds at the pump – which is not to be sniffed at considering petrol has now reached 140.20p a litre and diesel is at a new record of 146.72p.
Under inflated tyres cause higher fuel consumption as the tyres have an increased rolling resistance, which means that the engine has to work harder and more fuel is used, making the car less economical. Research shows that when tyres are under-inflated by just 20 percent or around 6psi, 3 percent more fuel is used.
So just follow these simple steps to start saving fuel – and cash.
* Pressures should be checked against the vehicle manufacturer’s recommended level. This can be found in the vehicle handbook and on a plate which is often located inside the fuel filler flap or on the driver’s door sill.
* Check the pressure when tyres are cold (i.e. when you have travelled less than two miles).
* If you are carrying a full load of passengers or luggage or will be towing a trailer or caravan, tyre pressures should be increased in line with the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendations. Details can be found in the vehicle handbook.
* Ensure a reliable and accurate pressure gauge is used.
* Check the pressure in all four tyres not forgetting to check the spare tyre as well.
* While checking pressures, give the rest of the tyre a visual inspection. Remove any stones and other objects embedded in the tread. Look out for any bulges, lumps or cuts.
Denna Bowman, Head Office