Once your car tyres have been fitted, it’s all too easy to simply forget about them - but just like other moving parts on a vehicle, tyres do need routine maintenance and relatively frequent checks, in order to ensure that the car tyres are not only safe, but also provide you with the very best value for money across their lifespan.

There are two main causes of poor performing tyres when it comes to tyre pressures - that’s an underinflated tyre and an overinflated tyre. The risks and issues of which are as follows:

Issues with Underinflated Tyres

Under inflation in car tyres is one of the most common problems with car tyres on the road, with the natural permeable nature of rubber - being responsible for tyre pressure being lost from the tyre, over time.

Under inflated tyres use more fuel, because there is more drag and contact between the tyre and the surface of the road. As well as using more fuel, under inflated tyres also wear at a rapid rate, as well as being susceptible to blowing out, due to the tyre overheating under normal driving conditions.

Issues with Overinflated Tyres

When there is too much air in a car tyre, tyres are ‘overinflated’ which translates to very poor handling, and a bumpier, more uncomfortable ride - due to inflated tyres being less capable of absorbing knocks and bumps on uneven road surfaces.

Importance of a Correctly Inflated Tyre

The above sections cover many of the problems of under inflating a tyre, as well as the problems associated with an over inflated tyre. In summary, when your car tyre is inflated to recommended levels - your tyres provide maximum MPG, maximum safety, as well as the slowest possible rate of treadwear - all whilst providing safe, comfortable handling and driving dynamics.

What affects Tyre Pressures?

Although there are many different things that affect tyre pressures, from the weather to driving styles - one of the biggest factors, is the weight you are carrying in your vehicle. Usually, car manufacturers give two different tyre pressures - one for normal use, and a higher pressure rating for when the vehicle is loaded with more passengers and luggage.

How Often to Check Tyre Pressure

At RoundTrip Tyres, we recommend checking your tyre pressures at least once a month. You can check your tyre pressures either at home, or at most petrol stations - and we recommend checking your tyre pressures, when your tyres are cold - so it’s ideal to check them when the car has been sitting for a while.

How to Find your Tyre Pressures

Finding the right tyre pressure for your vehicle could not be easier. As well as having the information available online, your recommended tyre pressures can be found in your car manual, stamped on the inside of the drivers door - or inside your fuel cap.

How to Check your Tyre Pressures

Prior to you checking your tyre pressures, it’s important to first of all know what your recommended tyre pressures are! Once you understand the numbers you need to be looking for, it’s time to use a tyre pressure gauge to check the tyre pressures. (We will cover gauges used, in the next section)

Remove the dust cap from the tyre valve, and hold the gauge onto the stem of the tyre valve stem - holding it down evenly across the stem and air will leave the tyre, giving you an accurate reading of the tyre pressure in the tyre.

If the tyre pressure is high vs. the recommended pressure, let some air out - but if the tyre is underinflated, put some air in the tyre.

Types of Tyre Pressure Gauge

There are a few types of tyre pressure gauge available on the market, digital, stick-type, and dial based gauges. All are accurate and work really well, so it’s all about personal preference; those that have an aversion to batteries or technology may choose to stick with analogue gauges, rather than digital products.

Bar vs. PSI Tyre Pressure Gauge

BAR and PSI are the two scales or measures used by car manufacturers to refer to tyre pressures. Usually, pumps and petrol station air filling stations operate in both BAR and PSI but a full conversion chart for the two figures can be found below:

(Calculator coming soon!)

Run Flat Tyre Pressures

Run Flat Tyres are filled the same way as normal tyres, although they do not show the usual ‘sagging’ that a normal tyre does, this is because the tougher construction of run flat sidewall makes it very difficult to visually detect a tyre with low pressure in vehicles with run flat tyres. It’s therefore essential to run a Tyre Pressure Monitoring System - which alerts the driver to tyres with low pressures.

The biggest advantage of using run flat tyres, is that they can - not surprisingly, be run flat for up to 50 miles (or 80 km) at a maximum speed of 50 mph (or 80 km/h). The sidewalls are built strong enough for you to be able to drive to a garage to have the tyre replaced.

Tyre Pressure Facts & Tips

● Check your tyres for structural damage, and signs of under inflation before long journeys.

● Ensure tyre pressures are checked monthly

● Make sure you know the correct tyre pressures

● Try and check the tyre pressure of your spare tyre

● Digital tyre gauges give the most accurate reading of tyre pressures

● Wear gloves when checking tyre pressures, saving your hands from dirt and grime

Tyre Pressure Guides

At RoundTrip Tyres, we have created specific guides around tyre pressures for some of the most popular vehicles in the UK - helping our customers understand the right tyre pressures for the tyres that we supply to them, you can find some of the most popular tyre pressure guides below:

● Bmw 3 Series Tyre Pressure

● Ford Focus Tyre Pressure

● Ford Fiesta Tyre Pressure

● Vauxhall Astra Tyre Pressure

● Fiat 500 Tyre Pressure