Pressure point: Never overinflate | india | Hindustan Times
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Pressure point: Never overinflate

Air pressure in the tyres is detrimental to the way your vehicle behaves. Many an accident has been caused due to a faulty tyre pressure and this is one thing which most of us tend to neglect.

india Updated: May 28, 2003 15:39 IST

Air pressure in the tyres is detrimental to the way your vehicle behaves. Many an accident has been caused due to a faulty tyre pressure and this is one thing which most of us tend to neglect. Listed in the manual are the recommended inflation pressures. For most passenger cars, these range from 27 to 32 psi (pounds per square inch).

The manufacturer’s recommendations are generally the best for all-round driving. Adding a couple of extra pounds of pressure will decrease the rolling resistance of the tyres and make a slight improvement in fuel economy – but will also make the tyres harder, which in turn may cause a rougher or harsher ride.

If you’re carrying a lot of extra cargo or car pooling, a few extra pounds of pressure would be recommended to offset the added weight. Add the extra pressure to the rear tyres. Never exceed the maximum inflation pressure specified on the sidewall of the tyre. This number is the maximum pressure the tyre is designed to safely handle.

All tyres leak a little air over time, with some losing up to half a pound a month. For this reason, tyre pressure should be checked at least once a month and certainly before taking a long trip or driving at sustained highway speeds. Underinflated or overinflated tyres can wear unevenly. Underinflation may also increase the risk of tyre failure or a blowout.

Recommended pressure is always for cold tyres, which means you should check the tyres in the morning before the vehicle has been driven. If you check the tyres right after driving, the readings will be several pounds higher than normal. Internal tyre pressure will also vary with the temperature.