Your tires need the proper amount of air to perform as they should. If your tires aren’t properly inflated, your gas mileage and performance will take a nosedive. Plus, it’ll impact the handling, and you could even have a blowout. Fortunately, maintaining tire pressure is pretty simple. Check out how to check the pressure and inflate your tires so you won’t have to worry about safety, fuel, or performance issues.
Get a Tire Gauge
You need to have a tire pressure gauge to check the pounds per square inch (PSI) reading for each tire. Some can be quite expensive, but low-cost gauges do the trick. In fact, affordable digital gauges tend to maintain accuracy longer than other options.
Find the Optimal Tire Pressure
Next, you need to find the recommended inflation level for your tires. Some people look at the markings on the sidewall of the tires, but that’s a mistake. Instead, you need to know what your manufacturer recommends for your specific vehicle. You can find this information in the owner’s manual and on the door jamb on the driver’s side of the car.
How to Check the Tire Pressure
You want to get an accurate reading, so only check the pressure when the tires are cold. Instead of driving and then letting the tires cool down, check the pressure first thing in the morning.
Before checking the pressure, make sure your car is level and in the shade. Then remove the dust caps on the valve stems. Next, press the tire gauge firmly on the stem so it can read the pressure. Look at the reading to find out if your tires have the right amount of air.
Make Sure the Reading is Accurate
Sometimes, you might get a strange reading back. The tire pressure gauge might say that your tires are extremely over or under-inflated, even though they look fine. Don’t add or remove air quite yet. Instead, use the tire gauge to get another reading. As you do this, make sure the gauge is firmly pressed to the valve so it can get an accurate reading.
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How to Fill Your Tires
If your tires are low, you will need to fill them with a home air compressor or at a gas station. Filling tires are similar to checking the pressure. However, this time, you’ll place the tip of the air hose on the tire’s valve stem. While you will hear the quiet sound of air filling the tires, it shouldn’t sound like it’s leaking. If it is, make sure that you have a secure connection.
After filling the tires, remove the air hose and recheck the pressure. You should repeat the process two more times to make sure that you have the optimal pressure. Lastly, replace the valve dust caps.
Air management is just one aspect of tire care. If you need additional maintenance, visit the service center at Doug Henry Ford of Ayden in Ayden, North Carolina. On the other hand, if the tires are the least of your concerns regarding your vehicle, we can help you find some new wheels. We have the new lineup of Fords, plus pre-owned options for every budget.