Archive for car safety – Page 2

Road Safety Tips for a Safe Campervan Holiday

Campervan holidays with your family can be a lot of fun, especially when you head out from a coastal city into the heartland of the country, taking on tiny towns and villages along the way in a bid to try to get to know your country that little bit better.

With all that said, road safety is incredibly important when driving a campervan, especially if it’s your first time. For this reason, whether you require campervan hire Perth wide or you plan on taking your own, make sure you take a note of the following road safety tips during your holiday so to ensure both you, and your campervan, make it back in one piece:

Plan Your Journey, Allocating Extra Time

Though planning your journey should be a core part of your trip preparation whether you’re driving a campervan or not, doing so is especially important when you’re behind the wheel of a much larger vehicle, as your journey is likely to take you longer in a campervan due to changes in speed limits (see below) and routes that may or not be available.

For this reason, always allocate extra time to the amount you believe you’ll need each day to make your journey. Before you leave it’s a good idea to only plan a few days ahead, as you’ll quickly discover through experience how quickly you can move on the roads in your camper, and therefore how much driving you, on average, can do each day.

Take Regular Breaks

When driving long distances such as those you’ll be driving in the outback during your campervan holiday, it’s so incredibly important you take regular breaks that this point alone could have a seven hundred word article written about it.

There are many ways in which to incorporate these break into your holiday so to stay safe while still creating an enjoyable experience for the whole family. One way in particular, is to take a break whenever you come across some particularly good scenery. Maybe even stop for a picnic. And of course, do your best to try to avoid late night or early morning drives if you can help it, as these will take much more out of you than an afternoon drive ever could.

Keep Your Distance

When driving a campervan, regardless of how long you’ve been driving one, you must ensure you keep your distance from the vehicle in front at all times.

Unlike cars, the weight of which don’t dramatically change depending on how much you put in them, you’ll have difficulty knowing the weight of the campervan you’ve hired when both your family and your luggage are all safely in the back, therefore keeping a safe distance from the vehicle in front at all times is your only real way of knowing you’ll be able to stop safely if you suddenly have to break for whatever reason. Hiring a campervan for your trip can help eliminate any car troubles you would normally expect to have on this sort of holiday. That said, you must treat the vehicle with respect at all times to ensure it continues to keep both you and your family safe.

Always Adhere to the Speed Limit

The speed limits are there for a reason, and depending on the road in which you’re travelling there’s a chance you may have to adhere to a lower speed limit in your campervan than you would normally have to in a car. Looking into these ahead of time will not only keep you safe, it’ll stop you from receiving an expensive ticket which could all but ruin a wonderful holiday.

If you hire a campervan specifically for your trip, ask the people you hire from about particular speed limits with regard to the different outback roads you’ll be travelling on, as nobody will know these rules and regulations better than them.

In conclusion, campervan holidays with your family can be a lot of fun, but road safety is incredibly important when driving a campervan, especially if it’s your first time. To ensure a safe trip, be sure to plan your journey ahead of time, take regular breaks, keep your distance, and always adhere to the speed limit.

A Drivers Guide To Being A Safe Driver Always

Since the actions of other drivers on the road are uncontrollable by you, you must count on your own experience and skills when driving your vehicle. Follow these ten tips to ensure that you are driving as safely as possible and that you are acting courteous to others with whom you share the road:

Plan Your Course

It is essential to know where you’re traveling before you leave. Check a local radio station or media source to inform yourself of current traffic activity or road and weather conditions on your route. By preparing ahead of time, you can allow extra time for driving and avoid delays. For longer trips, include a rest stop every two to three hours and stop sooner if you feel tired.

Maintain Your Vehicle

Make sure you read the owner’s manual for your vehicle and follow the recommended schedule for maintenance. Conduct your own check-ups on fluid levels, wipers, lights, brakes and tires. To ensure optimum visibility, make sure your outside lights, windows and mirrors are clean. Secure any loose cargo or items that could become a hazard.

Focus Your Attention

Being a safe driver means being both mentally and physically prepared to drive. Make sure you are attentive, alert and well-rested so that you are able to respond quickly if other drivers do not make the same choice. Allow yourself to take a break if you have difficulty focusing and always remain calm; don’t let your frustration or temper to cause you to act recklessly.

Minimize Your Distractions

Removing your eyes from the road, taking your hands off the wheel or letting your mind wander off of the driving task puts you and others on the road at risk. Events, objects and people outside and inside your vehicle can distract you. Driving demands complete concentration; any activities that interfere with your driving are more than you can safely manage.

Know Your Surroundings

Keep an eye out for trouble. Continually scan the roadway for hazards by keeping your eyes moving from one side to the other. Know what is happening ahead of you by watching for taillights. Know what is to the sides and rear of your vehicle by using mirrors as your guide.

Share Your Space

Many crashes could be prevented if drivers were courteous to others. You are sharing the road with motorcyclists, bicyclists, pedestrians and vehicles of different sizes as well as with drivers of various skill levels and ages.

Watch Your Speed

Posted maximum speeds are ideal for certain driving conditions. Adjust your speed for visibility and road conditions, traffic or when you are not operating at your best. Higher speeds provide less time to identify and react to a hazard and magnify your errors. Stopping distances are greater, and accidents are more severe. By the same token, if you are driving under the influence, your ability to judge speed may be impaired, and you may need to seek legal counsel from www.DWILawyersSaratogaSprings.com should you cause an accident.

Keep Your Distance

Give yourself room to move; you will need it in a crisis. To protect your vehicle, keep a safety cushion around your vehicle in which you can safely change lanes or take evasive action in emergencies. Keeping this distance also increases your ability to be seen by other drivers and to see the road around you.

Signal Your Intentions

Driving can be stressful. Be courteous to other drivers and signal what you intend to do. Be predictable and don’t hesitate to use your headlights or horns to establish eye contact when needed. Express your thanks to other drivers by a flash of your lights or by a wave of the hand.

Always Wear Your Seat Belt

Seat belts are your best defense in a crash. Making sure that you are properly secured in your vehicle keeps you in control and ready to react should a hazardous situation occur. Buckle up everyone in the vehicle including other passengers in the rear and front seats and children.

By following this guide, you can ensure that you will be a careful driver and do everything you can to protect against an accident. Should you find yourself in a crash due to the fault of another driver, you may need to seek legal counsel and provide proof that you were operating the vehicle in a safe and courteous manner.

Tips for Decreasing Your Risk of Distracted Driving

Remaining attentive and staying focused are important factors in promoting driver safety. While we are well aware that becoming distracted while driving is dangerous, it is something that happens far too often. Cell phones and other devices stretch our attention while passengers and multitasking also take our focus away from the road. In order to avoid distracted driving, here is a list of helpful tips.

Avoid Cell Phones

Given the increasing number of laws preventing the use of cell phones while driving, it is no secret that cell phones are one of the leading causes of distraction in a vehicle. You’ve probably seen the commercials presenting terrible stories of accidents in which a cell phone distracted a driver. While these commercials are dramatic, they raise a valid point.

Talking on the phone or texting takes away from the amount of attention that we can allocate to the road. Instead of having all of our senses focused on the task at hand, they are skewed as we attempt to simultaneously operate our vehicle and carry on a conversation.

Rather than running the risk of getting a ticket or causing an accident it is a wise choice to avoid cell phone use in the car. While certain things may need our immediate attention and demand cell phone use, there are ways around this. For instance, if you needed to make an important call to your boss at Bortek Industries you could pull over to make the call or call before you begin driving.

The same concept goes for sending text messages and checking your phone for email and other information. If utilizing your phone is important, take care of your business before you begin driving or pull over. This is your best bet for ensuring the safety of yourself and those around you.

Avoid Other Devices

While cell phones may be one of the central culprits for distracted driving other electronic devices are also dangerous. iPods and navigation systems are examples of distracting devices that are commonly utilized in vehicles.

In order to avoid the risk of becoming distracted behind the wheel, taking precautions with these devices can be beneficial. Rather than trying to input information into your navigator while driving you can do so before beginning your trip. The same goes for iPods as you can select playlists prior to driving on the road. These preliminary steps will prevent you from needing to take your eyes off the road to select songs or to input your desired destination.

Multitasking

Aside from operating an electronic device, there are multiple other dangerous forms of multitasking when it comes to operating a vehicle. Reaching for an object, doing your make up and eating food are all examples of tasks that take your attention away from the road. Also, tasks of this nature require you to take your hands off the wheel and make it difficult to adjust to situations.

It’s pretty difficult to swerve away from debris or to when your hands are busy eating French fries or reaching for an item you dropped. Whether or not you choose to perform one of these miniscule tasks while driving can be the difference between a safe trip and having an accident. The positive aspect of this issue is that these are all things that can wait until you reach your destination. Pick up your wallet later, fix your make up in the parking lot, wait on enjoying your fast food and devote your attention to driving.

Passengers

Ensuring that your passengers don’t become a distraction is another important aspect of safe driving according to the California Department of Motor Vehicles. Encourage friends to be respectful of your current task and teach children that driving is a serious activity that needs your full attention.

In terms of pets, keeping them in the back seat or utilizing transportation crates are methods for preventing them from interfering with the driving process. While we all love our pets, having your dog or cat crawling around beneath your feet while you drive presents a risk that you don’t need to take.

Decreasing the number of factors that distract you while you drive involves decreasing the number of activities, objects and companions that you allow to influence you. Keeping your car free of distractions and choosing to perform other tasks before or after your drive are keys to encouraging safer driving. While the aforementioned tips only cover a small number of issues in terms of distracted driving, they serve as a solid starting point for making your car a distraction free zone.

Stuck in a Snow Bank? Here’s What You Better Have

snow bank

Stuck in a Snow Bank? Here’s What You Better Have

According to the National Weather Service, 70 percent of the fatalities that involve ice and snow also involve automobiles. Whether you live in the city or a rural area, getting stuck in the snow is a very real possibility. For some people, help comes within minutes. For others, help does not arrive for days. If you find yourself stuck in the snow on a cold winter day, or night, there are ways to stay alive.

1.A Small Shovel

One of the worst things that you can do if you get stuck in feet-deep snow is to leave your car in search of help. Instead, survival experts warn that you should stay, not only with your vehicle, but inside of it. You should know that staying inside of your car presents its own unique set of dangers.

A small shovel or large coffee can comes in handy in these situations, especially if the snow is still falling. Make sure that you exit your car every 30 minutes and clear you tailpipe. Keep the roof, hood and trunk of your car cleared off, and dig out any snow surrounding your tires. This will help to keep you from dying from carbon monoxide poisoning, and will keep your car visible to those on the road and anyone in the air.

2.Flares and Triangles

Think of this: If you skidded across the road and got stuck, what are the chances that it will happen to someone else? To prevent another car from careening into your own, set emergency triangles and flares behind and in front of your vehicle. Place each at least 25 feet from your vehicle to ensure that other drivers can see you quickly. If the road is coated in ice, consider putting your emergency signalers further away from your car. It does no good for someone to slam on their brakes 20 feet from your vehicle; you are sure to get hit.

Snow Bank

3.A Watch

A watch for your car? You bet. If you aren’t in the habit of wearing a watch, keep a small watch or battery-operated digital clock in your car. There are things that you will need to time, and you don’t want to waste your car’s battery to do it.

Exit your car every 30 minutes, or more often in heavy snow fall, to clear it off. Check your tailpipe each time you exit the vehicle. Turn on your car and run the heat once an hour for 15 minutes. Remember to keep your windows cracked. Check on your flares every 30 to 45 minutes to make sure they are still visible.

4.An Emergency Kit

Anyone who lives in a region that welcomes snow in the winter should have an emergency kit in their car. These kits can mean the difference between life and death. Your kit should be stocked with a blanket, an extra set of clothing, several bottles of water, energy or granola bars, a whistle, an extra pair of shoes or boots, and a list of emergency contact numbers. Never assume that you will be able to get yourself out of the snow or that emergency crews will be able to reach you. Having a properly-stocked kit can save your life.

5.A Cell Phone

Believe it or not, not everyone in the world owns, or wants, a cell phone. If you are a member of this crowd, you certainly do not need to carry one; however, you do need to keep one in your car. You can buy a cheap, disposable cell phone to keep in your car from almost any big-box store. Keep it charged, and keep a charger in your car.

If you’ve never been stuck in the snow, consider yourself lucky. Stock your car with the essentials, and make sure your insurance policy is up to date. It’s the simple things that can keep you alive.

Deanna Ford is an insurance blogger. Check out her most recent article on auto insurance aurora co world climate if you are in the Colorado area.

5 Tips That Can Help After Getting A DUI

Getting charged with driving under the influence can most certainly be a life-altering experience. Many motorists instantly start to envision the worst-case scenario as soon as they are being placed in police custody. However, it is important to remember that you still have the right to defend your case in the court of law. Here are five tips that can help you after getting a DUI.

Always take a DUI very seriously

Unlike being stopped for a seat belt violation, being accused of driving while intoxicated is a very serious offense. Not only could it result in the loss of your driving privileges, but it could also put your freedom in jeopardy. If you live in an area that does not have access to public transportation, then it is likely that you will have to rely on others to provide you with a ride.

Remember that you do not have to plead guilty

Some people make the mistake of pleading guilty during their first court appearance. Due to the fact that most DUI cases are not cut and dry, it is not advisable to simply give up too soon. The truth of the matter is that there could be a few facts that have yet to be brought to your attention.

Do not fail to hire a reputable lawyer

A DUI case is surely not the time to be without the assistance of a knowledgeable lawyer. Hiring an experienced and highly-trained lawyer can definitely help you to gain a victory in court. An attorney Indianapolis that is well-versed in DUI laws is an indispensable commodity when it comes to defending your case.

Never drive while your license is suspended

If your license has been suspension because of an alleged DUI, then do not even attempt to drive your vehicle. Unless you have been granted a temporary permit, you will just have to bite the bullet until the trial is over. Failing to comply could get you into to some unnecessary trouble.

Attend all court hearings

Even if you know the potential outcome of a court hearing, you are still required to be present. The last thing that you want is to make a stressful situation even worse. A responsible lawyer will notify you well in advance.

Hopefully these tips will help you to tackle your DUI case with confidence. Whether you win or lose, it is essential that you give it your best effort.

What car parts have contained asbestos

Asbestos is a product you have probably all heard about, famed for its ability to act as an insulator it experienced widespread use in the construction industry. This quickly stemmed into other revenues and uses. It boasts an extreme resilience towards heat whilst remaining easy to obtain and cost effective.

Nowadays however the use of asbestos is strictly prohibited by many nations including Australia and the entire European Union. This is due a number of health issues that have been linked to exposure to the fibres contained within asbestos. These fibres which are often inhaled wreak havoc on the internal organs (especially the lungs) and as such conditions such as Mesothelioma, asbestosis and pleural plaques develop. Asbestos is now a recognised carcinogen meaning that exposure could increase the chances of developing cancer.

Those living in nations in which the import and use of asbestos is banned will have a far lower chance of encountering the hazardous product, however many countries still allow the use of asbestos in a number of products. Asbestos due to its incredible heat resistance was and still is a favoured material in many components found within a car. Many vehicles within the USA and other nations will still contain asbestos.

Brake pads.

If your going to find asbestos in your care this is probably the location to start. Brake pads often include asbestos and when these are worn down the asbestos becomes damaged releasing the fibres. Luckily for us though these fibres remain encased within the brake pad and it is only when new pads are required that asbestos would be released into the open air.

The majority of mechanics in developed countries will be aware of the risks of encountering asbestos and as such will have safety measures in place, which will reduce the amount of danger involved. Failure to have such safety measures in place may result in an employee of the company falling ill. Due to your negligence it will be deemed to have been your responsibility and this could be followed up with a hefty compensation claim.

Gear Box and Clutches

Similar to brake pads asbestos is found internally within many vehicles gear box, it is generally released during daily use including wear and tear etc. Once again many mechanics will already be aware of the dangers of working with these components and as such will take precautionary action to prevent any exposure.

Typical actions taken by an employer can range dependant on the amount of exposure to the product. Respiratory filters are the most common of all protective methods however many companies also have highly efficient extractor fans to draw away the majority of dangerous particles.

Hood liners

I have chosen to name hood liners last as they are probably the rarest of all the components found within a car that contain asbestos. Although not traditionally found within the stock hoodliners, it has been recognised that many custom made versions do still contain the product. The largest issue with hood liners that contain asbestos is that unlike brake pads and gear boxes the fibres do not remain enclosed when damaged. This means that the fibres often find their way out into the open where they may be inhaled by unsuspecting members of the public.

The use of asbestos in the motor industry is now sparse in comparison to 20 years ago however it does still exist. Countries including the USA still make use of asbestos within many products however its management and repair etc are all strictly regulated to the point where only licensed asbestos specialists can work with the product.

 

Adam Howard writes for Atrium Legal. He is an authority on asbestos within the workplace. Through his writing he hopes to restrict exposure of this hazardous material and people developing illnesses such as mesothelioma.

Do British Businesses Do Enough to Assess & Manage Supply Chain Risk?

Today’s economic environment and firms’ tendency to outsource core processes puts the onus on them to properly assess their supply chains for risk. Yet many firms are not doing this as well as they could.

In 2013, managers at British businesses are negotiating a new normal of economic unpredictability. While the economy may be slowly recovering, supply chains are still operating against an unstable and volatile backdrop.

As a result, companies need to implement a dynamic shift in their strategic approach to supply chain planning to properly proof their chains for risk. But how many are really taking the leap?

In 2012 and 2013 a number of shocks impacted on UK supply chains and even made national headlines. Chief of all was the horse meat scandal, when horse meat was discovered in products labelled as beef at Tesco, Asda, Aldi and other retailers.

In the wake of the crisis, companies said they would overhaul their supply chains and introduce rigorous new risk assessment procedures.

But how many did? According to a survey by the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply, there remains a disconnect between senior managers and their suppliers despite the supply chain shortfalls that the horse meat crisis threw up.

David Noble, chief executive of CIPS, said: “We hope this sorry tale will at the very least ensure supply chains are recognised as one of the most important aspects of a business and adequately scrutinised at every level.

“Those investors and businesses that do acknowledge this and master their supply chain will succeed, those that don’t will eventually get found out.”

So could 2013 mark something of a paradigm shift for UK supply chain planning?

Certainly, the role of the supply chain in the business has undergone significant change since the 2007-08 financial crisis, when many companies realised their current frameworks were no longer fit for purpose against significant market volatility.

One way companies are developing a new approach to risk is through the way they interact with their suppliers.

In a difficult financial climate, it is true that all parties are looking to cut costs and source good deals. But when supply chains are tasked with cutting costs through negotiation, there can be a tendency for them to be reactionary, rather than strategic – and this can result in some bad decisions.

Instead, while companies and suppliers once operated almost in isolation from each other, they are increasingly coming together and collaborating – using shared suppliers and supply chains to gain value, forge relationships and develop a greater understanding of risk.

Speaking to the BBC, Trevor Sorbie, the chief executive of IFS, said better collaboration is allowing businesses to get more out of the supply chain.

“These days, enterprise software systems can allow a large business to extend its reach in a virtual manner and collaborate with others to produce a value chain, not just a supply chain,” he said.

The impact of the financial crisis has led to many supply chain managers forging new risk strategies to optimise procurement channels and seek new buying opportunities. But there are still many companies stuck in the past. Could this year be the one they wake up to supply chain risk?

Jack Johnson – Van lock specialist at Maple Fleet Services

5 Auto Rules to Keep Your Family Safe On the Road

When driving a vehicle, you have a responsibility to keep yourself, your passengers and other drivers on the road safe by practicing safe driving techniques. Follow these five driving safety tips every time you get behind the wheel to keep your family as safe as possible.

 

Stay Focused

Remain focused on the road at all times. Don’t allow yourself to get distracted by the kids or playing with the radio. If you do need to address an issue, pull over to the side of the road first. Do not text or talk on your phone while driving.

Drive the Speed Limit

Speed limits are in place for a reason. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that excessive speed contributed to 31 percent of all fatal crashes and 11,674 lives were lost. Speeding will get you where you need to go faster, but it increases your risk of getting into an accident by up to 50 percent. Leave earlier if you need to be somewhere by a specific time.

Wear your Seat-belt

Always wear your seat-belt and require the same for all your passengers. They prevent you from being thrown around the car or through the windshield The NHTSA reports that 70 percent of all fatalities in car accidents for kids between the ages of 13 and 15 were due to not wearing a seat-belt.

Adapt Your Driving for Weather Conditions

The weather accounts for numerous small and large car accidents. If it is raining, snowing, foggy or there is ice on the road, take extra precautions. Drive slower than the posted speed limits and keep plenty of space between your vehicle and the one in front of you. Ensure that your tires are properly inflated and have adequate tread to reduce your chances of losing control. If your tires are worn down, you might want to get new tires from simpletire.com.

Don’t Follow Other Vehicles Too Closely

Keep a safe distance between your vehicle and the one in front of you. This gives you more time to stop if they decide to stop quickly or reduce speed when you’re not expecting it. Experts advise keeping a minimum of three seconds of distance between you and the car you are following. Follow six seconds behind when driving in inclement weather.

Driving is a quick way to get from place to place, but it’s important to drive safely. Practice defensive driving techniques and always be alert to your surroundings and other drivers so you don’t get into an accident.

Donating Your Used Car To Charity: Pros, Cons, And Tips

used_carWe donate our used clothing and other items to charity, so why not other items that we no longer have a use for? You can make a difference in a big way by donating big ticket items like boats and cars to charitable organizations. The increase in charities accepting vehicle donations has led to a mutually beneficial and booming business, wherein the donor saves by claiming the donation on income taz returns and the charity is able to sell the vehicle and use the funds to further its cause. While this might seem like a straightforward way to do good in the world, there are some associated risks with donating your car. 

Pros

  • Many charities have started to accept vehicles as a form of donation, so you can most likely find a charity that supports your favorite cause to donate to.
  • You can claim a huge deduction on your income tax returns when you donate your car to a charity approved by the IRS.
  • You get to save yourself the hassle of trying to find a buyer for your used car.
  • Donating a car makes it much easier to make a big difference for your charity with less financial impact to you than a cash donation.

Cons

  • Intermediaries that accept your car donation and then donate the proceeds to the charity of your choice often take a substantial cut away from your chosen cause. If the charities you support don’t accept car donations directly, you may be better off finding one that does.
  • To get a tax deduction, you’ll need to follow up with the charity to get paperwork that proves the vehicle’s value. Your estimate or the fair market value probably won’t cut it if your car is worth over $500.
  • The same paperwork to get rid of the car is still necessary- if you don’t formally re-title the vehicle, you could risk parking tickets and more down the line.

Tips

  1. Avoid 3rd parties and try to donate your car directly to the charity of your choice.
  2. Choose a charity that means a lot to you and has a big impact in its line of work. If the charities you usually support don’t accept car donations, take time to investigate alternatives instead of just picking the first charity you find. The Better Business Bureau can help you to evaluate charities whose activities you aren’t very familiar with.
  3. Make 100% sure that your chosen charity is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that is qualified by the IRS for donation deduction purposes. 
  4. If you have to use a middle man, do your research to find out how much of the proceeds from the car’s sale will actually go to the charity. Do they take a percentage, or a flat fee? Using an intermediary not only limits the effectiveness of your gift, but can also have tax implications.
  5. Keep a thorough paper trail for tax purposes in order to claim the donation on your tax returns.
  6. Deliver the car to the charity yourself so they don’t have to take money out of your donation to pay someone to come pick it up.
Featured images:

Jack Lovegood is a automotive expert and a contributing blogger for Chrysler Group LLC, where you can purchase a Jeep extended warranty at a discounted rate. 

5 Essential Maintenance Tips For Your Tires

After spending good money on tires, most drivers fail to give them adequate maintenance. Tires play an important role in driving safety, so making sure they’re in road-worthy condition is essential. Below are a few tire tips and tricks to follow. Properly purchased and maintained tires will last longer than neglected ones, saving you money, and most importantly, keeping you safe.

1. Buy Quality Tires from a Reputable Brand

First and foremost, when you purchase new tires, make sure they’re from a reputable company and of premium quality. You and your car depend on them. Buying internationally known brands like Goodyear and Nokian tires ensures safety and affordability. Remember, your purchase should reflect your driving style, driving environment, and vehicle. After buying a new set of tires, try driving the vehicle initially for at least 200 miles at medium speed on dry roads.

2. Maintain the Correct Tire Pressure

Find out the right air pressure for your tires and make sure you maintain it. Check the pressure before and after long drives, during cold driving conditions, and when carrying heavy loads. Otherwise, check every month regularly on a fixed date.

Under-inflated tires can overheat, causing excessive and irregular wear from over exertion. This might even lead to a blowout. Besides, tires that have been riding around with the improper air pressure need to be replaced more often. Over-inflated ones lead to loss of proper road grip and less traction on braking, the consequences of which are obvious. Maintaining optimum tire pressure is even good for the environment as the correct pressure helps in making the vehicle more fuel efficient.

3. Select the Right Tire Tread

More tread just means more grip. Although legal limits are 1.6mm, driving with anything under 3.0mm can be risky. Do not just buy tires based on how the tire looks. Use a standard tread gauge and ensure tread depth is sufficient on all four tires. Check the inside, outside and center portions. How long tires will last with good tread in the end depends on the brand.  For example, the usual length of service for quality Nokian tires can be as long as 60,000 miles.

4. Pay Attention to Balance and Alignment

Improper wheel alignment is the main reason for premature tire wear. Poor alignment and balance issues also contribute to over-consumption of fuel and loss of road grip. Check the alignment immediately if you sense the vehicle pulling towards either side while driving or if the steering wheel shakes when driving at high speeds.

5. Stay on Top of Tire Rotation

If you’re only buying two tires, always fit the new tires in the back. Having the better tires in the back means more driving control and directional stability. Also, be sure to have your tires rotated every so often – many people like to have this done at the same time as an oil change – in order to ensure even wear. In addition, replace the valves every time you change your tires. Properly tightened and functioning values with well fitted dust caps make sure the tires remain safe. Check for tears on the side, cracks, bulges, and damage to the wheel rim. Sub-standard products damage easily, but high-quality tires will last longer.

These five tire tips are extremely important to follow, primarily because they concern the safety of the car and its passengers. On top of being a smart car owner who properly maintains his or her vehicle, remember to avoid rash driving, excessive speeds, and frequent braking. Take good care of your car and it will take good care of you!

Featured images:
  •  License: Royalty Free or iStock source: http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/images/results.aspx?qu=tires&ex=2#ai:MP900202010|

James Cash is a master mechanic and part time writer.