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Tyre Tread Pattern

RACV stresses the importance of tyres to car safety

The Automobile Association of Victoria (RACV) has urged Australian drivers to take the time to perform some simple car safety checks which could save their lives out on the roads.

With kids back at school and older ones well into the working year, the morning and evening commutes can see lots of road activity.

“Vehicle safety checks are crucial, whether your car is new or an older model,” said RACV acting manager of vehicle engineering Nick Platt.

He encouraged motorists to make sure they verify fluid levels, the radiator and cooling system, the car battery and windscreen wipers. More than anything, however, he highlighted the need to be vigilant when it comes to tyre safety.

“I cannot stress enough how important tyres are to a car’s safety,” said Mr Platt.

He said that RACV research had indicated that tyre maintenance was being neglected, with one in five cars on Victoria’s roads found to have at least one tyre that was not roadworthy.

“Every time you drive there is wear and tear on your tyres and having the incorrect tyre pressure will escalate the effect on your tyres and put you, and your passengers, at risk.”

The RACV reminds drivers to check tyre pressures when tyres are cold and to follow recommended minimum PSI levels for their vehicles.

In addition to the RACV’s recommendations, drivers should also make it a habit to regularly inspect the overall condition of their tyres. This includes looking for signs of uneven wear, bulges, cuts, and punctures, which could lead to tyre failure or compromise vehicle safety. If you notice any of these issues or are unsure about the condition of your tyres, it’s essential to consult a professional tyre technician for advice or repair.

Another crucial aspect of tyre safety is ensuring proper wheel alignment and tyre balancing. Misaligned wheels can cause uneven tyre wear and negatively affect the handling, while imbalanced tyres can lead to vibrations and reduced tyre life. Regularly scheduling wheel alignment and balancing services can help maintain optimal vehicle performance, improve fuel efficiency, and extend the life of your tyres.

Lastly, don’t forget to monitor the tread depth of your tyres. Tread depth plays a significant role in maintaining traction on wet roads and preventing hydroplaning. As your tyres wear down, their ability to grip the road in wet conditions decreases, increasing the risk of accidents. Most tyres come with built-in tread wear indicators, but you can also use the coin test to gauge tread depth. If the tread is below the legal minimum depth, it’s time to replace your tyres to ensure a safe driving experience. By following these essential tyre safety tips and performing regular vehicle checks, you can contribute to a safer road environment for yourself and others around you.

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Posted 11/04/2023