November 30, 2021
Let’s be honest, this year, much like the last one, has been difficult. Most of us are understandably itching to get out and about, and for many a road trip to explore our bountiful backyard is on the cards.
With that in mind, here are some easy ways to get your tyres in shape. These tips from Tyre Stewardship Australia will help you save money by extending the life of your tyres, maintain safety and performance and, of course, help the environment by using tyres for their intended lifespan. And after your long-awaited holiday, you can keep them in mind all year round!
This one is simple. Remember to check your tyre pressure monthly and before long road trips. Why? Tyres lose approximately one pound per square inch of pressure per month and that gets faster as temperatures rise. When pumping up those tyres, always follow the recommended pressure. Both under- or over-inflation can result in uneven tyre wear, increased fuel consumption, heavy handling and steering and potentially tyre blow-outs.
Tyre placard, which contains all information regarding your tyres, is located either inside the glove box lid, fuel filler flap or on the driver’s door or opening.
This isn’t popular knowledge, but front tyres require regular alignment. Tyres can get misaligned due to small things like driving over a pothole or bumping into a kerb. Signs to look out for include trouble controlling the steering wheel, the car feeling unstable and pulling to one side of the road, and/or tyres screeching when turning. Misalignment can result in excessive premature tyre wear, so don’t forget to get your car checked when you notice any warning signs and always check with your mechanic when dropping your car off for servicing.
Not something you have to do on your own. This can be left to your mechanic to check off the list. It’s important for you to ensure that it is done every 8,000 to 12,000 km as each tyre wears differently, and rotation helps ensure tyres wear more evenly and reach maximum tread life. Tyre rotation results in balanced handling and traction and a more consistent performance.
Again, something to ask your mechanic to do is to check your tyre balance. A full set of tyres is expensive and maintaining the tyre balance on your car is essential for you to get your return on investment. Balancing your tyres ensures the weight is evenly distributed as well as providing greater control over your vehicle. Driving an unchecked, unbalanced car for a long duration can cost you a lot of money as you might have to replace not just the set of tyres but also shock absorbers, struts and steering and chassis components more regularly.
This one you can do yourself, and it is crucial. Regularly check the condition of the treads of your tyres as it is one indicator of your vehicle’s health. You can do this by checking if the bars of hard rubber, also known as tread wear bars, are visible. If so, this indicates the tyre’s tread has become worn, and your vehicle might need a new set of tyres. Simply take your car to the mechanic to get the final word.
Practising these easy tips and being mindful of your car tyres can help you save money and ensure you get maximum returns on your current set of tyres. Plus, it helps to keep your car in good shape. And when your tyres have lived their intended lifespan, and it is time for new ones, two small decisions and can make a huge difference to the environment. First, select a Tyre Stewardship Australia accredited retailer, so your old tyres are going to a company committed to sustainable outcomes. Second, opt for a tyre manufacturer/brand that is financially contributing to support markets right here in Australia. Being a conscious consumer is crucial as approximately 28% or 127,000 tonnes of used tyres are either dumped, buried onsite or get sent to landfill. Simply by choosing better you can partake in helping Australia transition towards a more circular economy.
Simply visit mytyresmychoice.com.au to find an accredited retailer near you.
Don’t forget to get your tyres checked before you head out this summer. Happy road tripping!
Neha became a Planet Arker in August 2021. She brings over a decade of experience in marketing communications and describes herself as a "one-woman band", having worked across all PR, Corporate Communications and Marcom functions. Currently a Master of Sustainability candidate at the University of Sydney, she is doing her academic research project at Planet Ark on the topic - Applying the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Organisational Planning & Strategy. She is passionate about combining the two disciples - communications and sustainability and climate science. She loves food, travelling and books.