My Ultimate Tyre Guide

Your tyres are what keep your vehicle running smoothly on the road, and they are arguably as important as the engine when it comes to you getting safely to your destination. Do you know how to look after your tyres and ensure that they are in the best possible condition?


Here’s a quick checklist:

Tyre pressure

This is, as it sounds, the pressure to which your tyre should be inflated. Many tyres have their optimum pressure on the tyre wall making it easy for drivers to maintain their air pressure at the right levels. If your tyres do not have the pressure on them, most East Midlands garages will be able to let you know, or you could consult your owners’ manual.

Tread depth

Your treads are those deep grooves patterned into your tyres. Contrary to common belief, the tread is not necessary to keep the vehicle on the road: not when it is dry anyway. No, tread is there to squeeze water out from between the tyre and the road surface when it is raining or has just rained or flooded. Without treads, there is a high chance that the vehicle will hydroplane. Hydroplaning (also called aquaplaning) happens when the water on the surface of the road prevents the tyres from ‘biting down’ on the road. This loss of grip can make your vehicle a fast-moving, lethal missile that cannot be controlled or stopped.

Keep an eye on your tread depth, and be aware of legal limits: in the UK your tyres must have a constant depth of at least 1.6 millimetres at every point on the tyre. Most new tyres have a tread depth of at least 8 millimetres, so getting all the way down to 1.6mm will take a while. Check your tyre tread using something small enough to slip into the gap of the treads – a small coin, matchstick or something similar, and then measure the length hidden by the tread. This will give you a rough guide as to the tyre depth – and because it is only a rough guide, be sure to stay on the side of caution and change your tyres long before they are in danger of breaching guidelines.

External Damage

Nails can pierce tyres, cracks can form, and wear and tear can wreak havoc on tyres. Check your tyres often, looking carefully for signs of damage and be aware that a hole can look like a little dark mark, or a small slit: you must be vigilant and thorough in your examination. Drop by at the most reliable – Calmac Autocentre Northampton tyres. They stock great quality branded tyres at the best prices in town. Paying attention to your tyres is a good way to ensure that you have a safe and sound drive while exploring the beautiful area near Northampton – an area that is connected to much of England on busy highways and motorways!

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