Some car owners wait until their scheduled maintenance and have a mechanic inflate their tires, but a regular checkup and inflation of car tires can save gas and money. Even President Obama, during his campaign run in 2008, brushed touched on the topic.
“Making sure your tires are properly inflated, simple thing, but we could save all the oil that they’re talking about getting off drilling, if everybody was just inflating their tires and getting regular tune-ups,” he said. “You could actually save just as much.” Said President Obama
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, having properly inflated tires can save up to $0.11 per gallon. Tires that are under-inflated lower gas mileage by up to 0.3 percent for every 1 pound per square inch drop in pressure across all four wheels.
In addition to decreased gas mileage, driving with under-inflated tires will burn the rubber faster and force the car owner to purchase a new set of tires sooner than expected – which adds even more costs. Poor tire maintenance could also lead to a crash, potentially causing an injury or raising drivers’ auto insurance costs.
Inspect your own tires
Testing the pressure of car tires is simple and only takes a couple of minutes. Experts suggest car owners to purchase a digital tire gauge and store it in the glove compartment or trunk.
Before checking the tire pressure, find out what the appropriate tire pressure level is for the car. This information should be either in the doorjamb on the driver’s side or on the owner’s manual. Drivers should remember there may be a different tire pressure level required for a vehicle’s back and front tires.
It’s recommended to test the pressure only after the car has rested for a while and the tires are cool. Then, drivers can take off the valve caps and place the tire gauge onto the stem of the valve.
When pressing down, there may be a small release of air, which is normal. Read the level and compare it to the required tire pressure level. If the tires need inflation, go to a nearby gas station or body shop. Generally, inflating car tires is either free or a couple of dollars at most – money which will be made up quickly in better gas mileage.