As the school year comes to an end for most children, their families eagerly look ahead to their summer break and for many, an extended drive to the beach, the lake, amusement parks and other enjoyable destinations. According to The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., this is a great time for those families to consider not just how much they can pack into the family car, but the importance of showing some care for that vehicle before the trip.
According to the travel site TripAdvisor, cars are the most popular method of transportation for planned summer travel, despite continued high gas prices, with 74 percent of travelers reporting that they will drive to their destination, followed by air travel and trains.
Experts recommend that many vehicle components and systems be inspected on a regular basis, but especially when a lengthy driving trip is planned. Among the most critical of automotive components, tires are the only four contact points between the vehicle and the road, so they need special care and concern from the vehicle owner.
Improper air pressure in tires can lead to a multitude of problems from uneven and accelerated tire wear, to structural damage in a tire. An underinflated tire also has the potential to affect tire performance, including making a vehicle less fuel-efficient. With temperatures rising and vacation travel commencing, the attention given to the care and maintenance of tires should be heightened, according to Goodyear officials.
"Checking tires for proper inflation and tread condition is one of the most critical and easiest maintenance procedures for a consumer," said John Peer, vice president of Goodyear Retail. "It doesn’t take much time or sophisticated equipment. Drivers can check their tires by themselves, or any of our retail outlets would be happy to provide the service."
According to research by the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA), not only do many drivers ignore their tires, most simply do not know enough about how to care for the tires correctly. The RMA says just one in six motorists are "tire smart," which describes those who know how often to check tire pressure, when to check tires and where to find the correct inflation pressure for their vehicle’s tires. This RMA also sponsors National Tire Safety Week, a period that emphasizes the simple steps drivers can take to ensure their tires are in good working condition.
Goodyear recommends that motorists check tire inflation at least monthly or before a long trip, and check the tire pressure when the tires are cold (before driving). Tires should be inflated to the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendations printed on the vehicle door placard or in the owner’s manual, not the maximum limit stamped on a tire sidewall.
For additional information on tire care from Goodyear, motorists can consider these sources:
Goodyear outlets are distributing the RMA’s "Be Tire Smart, Play Your PART" consumer booklets, which stress the importance of inflation pressure, wheel alignment, tire rotation and visual checks of tire tread.
On www.goodyear.com, visitors will find extensive information on tire care, product selection and more. The "Personal Tire Care" section contains advice on tire pressure and proper inflation, visual inspections, tire repairs, saving fuel and more.
With their lighted message boards, Goodyear’s famous blimps continue to spread the tire care message while in flight, urging consumers on the ground to check tire pressure and treadwear.
Goodyear also works with some of its tire dealers and store managers for several local market media activities, including participation in television segments to provide viewers with tips for tire and vehicle care.
For more information about Goodyear and its products, go to www.goodyear.com.