Anything related to effective and safe tire pressure in your vehicle must not be treated with levity for the significance of tires in your driving safety. For this reason, you are always enjoined to make sure that tire air pressures are at their very best all the time. How then is uneven tire pressure in your driving safety? This question, and several others, Â will be treated in due course.
First and foremost, you are recommended to set the pressure in all your tires according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Notably, any uneven tire pressure is bound to lead to uneven and accelerated tire wear, which in turn can cause uneven traction.
In addition, it can lead to instability in the vehicle, since the tires are designed to flex, which is capable of causing the tires to flex differently. As a result, any differences in tire pressure between the front and rear tires is unacceptable and bad.
Even car manufacturer’s do not usually set them up that way in most cars, though some do it depending on the type of car. Where that is done, it is more of a technical adjustment for varying driving styles.
Again, you are not advised to drive with either low or uneven tire pressure because that is very capable of causing you to lose control of the vehicle, especially when at high speeds, thereby endangering yourself, your passengers and others on the road as well. Additionally, low tire pressure will negatively affect your fuel economy too and cause tires to wear out much faster than they ought to.
What happens if one tire has more air pressure than the others?
Whenever one tire has a different air pressure inside it than the others, several things are bound to happen. First, your vehicle is bound to suffer from bad traction while driving. Second, your tires are also liable to wear out faster and prematurely too.
Third, it is also capable of making you lose control of the vehicle, particularly when driving at high speeds. In essence, always maintain your tire pressures evenly according to the recommendations of the manufacturers or as specified in the user manual.
When should you worry about tire pressure?
You should start worrying whenever your tire pressure is either below or above the pressure recommended by the manufacturers for your type of vehicle.
This is because any marked difference can lead to a number of problems such as accelerated tire wear, loss of traction or losing control of the vehicle while driving. You may also risk damaging your tire entirely at certain excessive tire pressures.
Therefore, Â always make sure that your tire pressure does not exceed or fall below that which is recommended for your car.
Though higher tire pressures are not really dangerous,Â as long as you maintain them below the maximum inflation pressure.
The maximum inflation pressure of any tire is usually written on the tire sidewall and is usually higher than the recommended tire pressure of about 33 PSI. In a nutshell, your tire pressure should be set at around 35 to 36 PSI, though a lot depends on your vehicle type really.
At what PSI will a tire explode?
Your tire is bound to explode anything from about 200 PSI ( pound per square inch). However, under hot weather and other prevailing highway conditions, the temperature of the air inside the tire is liable to rise by about 50 degrees. This can increase the pressure inside the tire by about 5 PSI
Is uneven tire wear dangerous?
Yes, it certainly is. It is therefore recommended that you set the pressure in all your tires evenly according to that recommended by the manufacturers or in your user manual.
Uneven tire pressure causes uneven vehicle traction on the road, as well as an increased rate of tire wear. In addition, it can also cause instability in the vehicle, especially as the tires are meant to flex, and any uneven tire wear will cause them to flex at different rates. So, yes, uneven tire pressure is definitely dangerous to both you and the vehicle too.
Is 40 PSI okay for tires?
Yes, it is. Most vehicles on the road are designed with standard passenger pressure tires. The tires do not perform when they are at pressures over or below these standard values. For most of these vehicles, the standard pressure is between 20 to 50 PSI. So, yes, 40 PSI is good for most tires.
Does an alignment fix an uneven tire wear?
Even a minor misalignment will shorten the life span of a tire by a couple of thousand miles, while a major one by several thousands of miles.
However, getting an alignment will not correct any uneven tire wear if it has already taken place, but it can stop or slow it before it happens.
In other words, it is right to say that an alignment can reduce or even stop any uneven tire wear before it happens, and not after it has occurred. So, yes, an alignment can fix uneven tire wear.
How do you fix uneven tire wear?
In order to fix any uneven tire wear, there are certain steps to be taken. First, make sure that your wheels are in proper alignment as at when due always, which is about every two years or so.
Second, always make sure that you drive with your tires at the recommended pressures as specified by the manufacturers or according to what is given in the user manual of your car.
Such recommended pressures must be maintained even and the same in all the tires because if there are any differences, uneven wear cannot be prevented.
Third, sometimes the rate at which your tires wear out is dependent on your style of driving too and how you apply the brakes as well. Drive carefully and apply the brakes as carefully as possible. Doing all these will certainly fix or reduce the rate at which your tires wear out unevenly.
Frequently asked questions(FAQ)
Should all tires have the same pressure?
Yes, they should. You are advised to set all the tires to the pressures recommended by the manufacturers in the user manual.
This is because when the pressures are uneven, it causes the tires to have uneven traction and also to wear out faster than they should. Furthermore, uneven tire pressures can lead to instability problems too, because the tires will flex at different rates.
Can you drive on a tire with low PSI?
No, you should not, particularly when it is lower than 20 PSI. Most vehicles are equipped with standard passenger tires which do not stand up well whenever they are driven on a flat tire.
For convenience and safety, do not drive any vehicle at a tire pressure of less than 20 PSI or more than 50 PSI at any time. Basically, therefore, you are not advised to drive the vehicle whenever its tire pressure is less than 20 PSI or you will risk damaging it.
How long can you drive on unbalanced tires?
The run-flat tires are safe for maybe about 50 miles at most or before you begin to notice any signs of pressure depletion in the tires. If at any time you begin to feel that you have low tire pressure, look for a safe place to pull over as soon as possible. Should the tire be just low on pressure and not actually flat, it can usually be repaired with little or no damage to its rims.
How do I check my alignment?
You can easily check up on your tire alignment at home through the following steps:
(1). In order to check the toe, you should park the vehicle on level ground with the tires facing straight ahead and the steering wheel centered.
(2). Then, measure from line to line with the use of tape that is level with the floor.
(3). Again, measure on the back sides of the tires.
(4). Should the steering wheel be already centered, adjust the tie rods on each side by the same amount?
Should I balance my tires before an alignment?
There is really no need to balance your tires before any wheel alignment, though what is done will actually depend on you.
Normally, any tire balancing is usually done so that you can restore the tire balance due to any uneven wear. Wheel alignment, on the other hand, is done in order to adjust the angle of your car’s wheels to their proper positions.
How do I know if my tires need to be rotated?
There are signs or symptoms to look out for before you decide on whether your tires need to be rotated or not. These are:
(1). Your tires need to be rotated if they are showing any signs of uneven wear. Tires wearing down is a fact you can’t avoid whatever you do, but they should wear out evenly and uniformly.
Can alignment affect brakes?
Yes, it can. Poor wheel alignment not only accelerates tire wear, but can also reduce fuel economy, make your wheels work against each other, put excessive strain on your suspension components, and also impede braking efficiency. If your vehicle is out of alignment, it can also affect your entire vehicle and possibly put your safety at risk too.
How many kilometers should you get an alignment?
You can drive for a distance of not more than 5 000 kilometers before you can get an alignment. However, this figure varies from one vehicle to another. It is therefore advisable to check with your vehicle’s manufacturers on the exact distance or time frame before you can get an alignment. The major criteria for getting an alignment are the camber, caster and toe.
How long should an alignment last?
All things being equal, an alignment should last for between 2 to 3 years. However, in order to be sure and on the safe side, it is best suggested that you get an alignment whenever you are changing your vehicle oil.
Is a lifetime alignment worth it?
In most cases, lifetime wheel alignment is a great arrangement. Though for you to get the value of this arrangement, you are advised to use it. However, these plans will regularly pay for themselves after about 2 or 3 wheel alignments. You should be using them regularly if you care for the condition of your vehicle.
Why should you rotate your tires?
Failure or refusal to rotate your tires will cause them to wear unevenly. In addition, cornering and braking regularly also cause minor tread deformations along the tread area, which can be effectively checked with regular tire rotations. Uneven tire wears cause your tires to damage prematurely, thus shortening their life spans.
Can an alignment be done wrong?
Yes, it can. Mistakes in repairs are commonly made due to human natures or incompetence. However, should this happen, the repair shop should take it upon themselves to correct any mistakes at no extra cost to you other than the initial payment.
Why does my car pull to the right even after alignment?
A major cause of your car pulling to one side is bad wheel alignment. Wheel alignment can be altered by road and driving conditions, so always make sure that you take the most necessary care while driving.
Is Uneven Tire Pressure Bad – Conclusion
The correct pressure in your tires is meant to provide safety to yourself, other road users and also the vehicle itself. It is for this singular reason that it is recommended you keep monitoring the conditions of your tires at all times.
When the air pressure in your tires is uneven or less than what it should be according to the manufacturer’s instructions, you risk so many things happening.
First, your tires are bound to wear out much faster than normal, and second, there is the risk of losing traction in the vehicle. Finally, the vehicle may become difficult or even impossible to control especially at high speeds.
I am passionate about all things automotive and have a deep understanding of the topic. As a mechanic, I use my free time to share knowledge of everyday challenges that any car owner can experience – helping you make informed decisions about tires.