Peace of Mind

Wednesday, June 16, 2010 by Porter Pryde

Like many families, you may be planning a summer trip that involves packing up the car and possibly loading the pull behind camper or trailer. But after you have checked and adjusted the tire air pressure, how do you ensure that your trailer tires maintain the proper air pressure throughout your trip? Besides visually inspecting your trailer tires at gas stops, you can monitor trailer tire air pressure while you drive by installing a retro-fit tire pressure monitoring system.

At Tire Rack, we have two systems available that when installed will assure you that your tires are properly inflated.

Dill TPMS Dill High-pressure Retro-fit Trailer Tire Pressure Monitor

  • Provides real-time monitoring of four tires
  • Can be installed on most any 4-wheel application
  • Alerts for low- or high-pressure, air leaks and temperatures changes
  • Mounts inside of tire on wheel (wheel and tire breakdown required to install)



Accutire TPMSAccutire External Retro-Fit TPMS

  • Ideal solution for vehicles without O.E. TPMS
  • Receiver plugs into 12-volt outlet
  • Sensors are screw-on valve caps (no breakdown of wheel and tire required)

Check out these innovative solutions before starting out on your next family vacation.  The peace of mind you will have knowing that your trailer tires are properly inflated is invaluable.  After all, you have enough to worry about, like, where the next rest stop is.

Need a tire pressure monitoring system?

Tuesday, June 1, 2010 by Tire Rack Team
Tire pressure is crucial to vehicle performance and the life of your tires. If your tires don't have the correct pressure, you put yourself at risk for blowouts and incorrect wear. While tire pressure monitoring systems come standard on most new vehicles, it isn't the case with older models.

Consider purchasing the Accutire External Retro-Fit TPMS from Tire Rack if your vehicle doesn't have a tire pressure monitoring system. It's one of our newer models, and it couldn't be easier to install. All you have to do is plug the receiver into your vehicle’s 12-volt outlet after programming the screw-on sensors and installing them as valve stem caps. Truly, it's that easy. And if your tire pressure dips below the requirements for your vehicle, the receiver will let you know with an audible signal.

See all tire pressure monitoring systems from Tire Rack.

Under Pressure!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010 by Mason Rush
Tire Rack is frequently asked the question...What pressure setting should I use on my new tires?

The correct pressure settings for your vehicle can be referenced in the owner's manual or on the placard found inside the drivers door jamb. The information will provide a recommended cold temperature setting that is to be used regardless of the tire size or manufacturer as long as it is properly load rated for your vehicle. The tire itself, has a maximum psi that is not to be exceeded on a cold inflation reading. It is always best to check tire pressures first thing in the morning before driving the vehicle. This is the point when you will find the truest reads and can maximize the pressure settings on all corners of the vehicle

Maintaining the correct tire inflation rates will help maximize tire performance and fuel economy, which allows drivers to experience optimal comfort, durability and performance designed to match the needs of their vehicle.

Might I recommend a few useful air gauges by Accutire that are helpful in maintaining proper tire inflation settings:

Digital Set Point Programmable Air Gauge with Light

Digital Set Point™ Programmable Air Gauge w/Light



Digital Pencil Air Gauge with Tread Depth Gauge

Digital Pencil Gauge with tread depth indicator





ABS Coated Air Gauge with Digital Display

ABS Coated Air Gauge with digital read


 


Under Pressure

Tuesday, May 11, 2010 by Jonas Paeplow

Most vehicle owners do not check tire pressure nearly enough. An American Automobile Association (AAA) poll suggests that 85 percent of motorists do not even know how to check tire pressure.

The most important job a tire has is to support the load to which it is attached. Tires are rated to handle specific loads but only at a predetermined air pressure. By keeping the air pressure set correctly, tire performance, longevity and fuel economy are optimized.

According to tire industry data, 85 percent of all tire air pressure losses are the result of slow leaks that occur over a period of time. Tires typically lose air pressure through natural leakage (permeation) at a rate of about 1 psi per month. In addition, tire manufacturers say that seasonal climatic changes result in air pressure losses of 1 psi for every 10 degrees F decrease in the ambient temperature.


Here in the Midwest, differences between summer and winter temperatures average about 50 degrees F, resulting in a net loss or gain of approximately 5 psi in air pressure. This variation is enough to drastically affect handling, traction and durability of the average tire if the pressure is not adjusted. Even temperature fluctuations during an average day can make a difference. Variations between nighttime and daytime temperatures in this part of the country can average 20 degrees F and result in pressure changes of more than 2 psi.

A tire pressure survey of more than 5,400 vehicles’ conducted in March-May 2009, by the Rubber Manufacturers of America found:

  • Only 9% of vehicles had four properly inflated tires.
  • 50% of vehicles had at least one under inflated tire.
  • 19% of vehicles had at least one tire under inflated by 8 psi

According to government statistics, in the United States, 660 lives are lost and 33,000 are injured every year due to tire pressure related accidents. Improper tire pressure costs an extra $3.7 billion in fuel annually and every year, 4.5 million tires need to be replaced before reaching the end of their designed lifespan. A 10 psi loss of air pressure could result in a corresponding reduction in tire load capacity of 1,000 lbs. Overloading of tires combined with highway speeds will cause tires to overheat and lead to them to fail, prematurely.

Tire inflation pressure should be checked every month and before long trips. To properly check pressure, check tires when cold – before the vehicle is driven. Use the vehicle manufacturer’s recommended pressure found on a label located on the driver’s door or door pillar or check the owner’s manual.

The most accurate way to check your tire pressure economically is with a digital tire pressure gauge. Two of the finest examples available at Tire Rack are:

The Accutire ABS Coated Air Gauge features heavy-duty construction to withstand shifting around in your glove compartment. Designed to last, it has an angled head and rubber coated handle for easy gripping. The LCD display is large and easy-to-read. If you forget to turn the gauge off, don't worry, it is equipped with automatic shut off. The tire gauge will read within 0.05 psi. The lithium battery will never need to be recharged or replaced. This digital gauge measures air pressure from 5-150 psi in 0.5-pound increments.

 

ABS Coated Air Gauge 

Accutire Digital Set Point Programmable Air Gauge w/Light is an easy-to-use, multi-featured gauge with an extra large, blue, backlit LCD screen and ergonomic styling. It measures psi from 5-99 pounds in 0.5-pound units, and includes the patent-protected Set Point programmable feature which allows for recording the factory-recommended tire pressure for both front and rear tires. Other helpful features include a white LED flashlight to make checking tire pressure at night or in the garage a cinch; an audible pressure signal; auto off; and a five-year manufacturer warranty.


Digital Set Point Programmable Air Gauge w/Light


But my car came equipped with a Tire Pressure Monitoring System, why do I still need to check pressures, why not just wait until the light comes on?

The system of computer and sensors to monitor tire pressure is known as Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS). A major concern is that drivers of vehicles equipped with a tire pressure monitoring system will become over confident in the capabilities of their system and will be even less likely to confirm their vehicle's cold tire pressure

In the fall of 2000, following several fatal accidents involving tire inflation, tire failure and vehicle rollover, a bill called the Transportation Recall, Enhancement, Accountability and Documentation Act (TREAD) was signed into law. This law mandates the use of a suitable TPMS technology in order to alert drivers of a severe under-inflation condition of their tires. All new models produced after September 2007 are required to have the system.

There are two types of systems on the market today — indirect and direct. As a tire loses pressure its rotational speed changes relative to the properly inflated tires. Indirect systems use algorithms to interpret signals from wheel speed sensors to detect a deflated tire.

Direct systems use separate pressure transducers mounted in each wheel that detect deflation and then transmit a frequency signal to a control unit which triggers an information lamp on the instrument panel. Both systems still require manual correction of the tire’s air pressure.
 

So why should you still check your tire pressure manually? Well, its a little like waiting until your oil light comes on before you check your oil, in other words, it could be too late.

A passenger car tire that requires 35 psi on a vehicle with TPMS may not trigger the lamp and warn the driver about pressure loss until it drops to 26 psi depending on the type of system used. Under the same circumstances, a driver of a light truck that calls for 80 psi won't be warned until just 60 psi remains. In both of these cases, significant load capacity has been sacrificed before the driver is warned.

Regardless of what type of vehicle you drive or what type of tires you ride, spending a few minutes every month checking your tires is time well spent. You'll save fuel dollars, premature tire replacement costs and who knows, perhaps you might save someone's life in the process. Isn't that worth it?

Have you heard about Accutire?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009 by Tire Rack Team

We all know that air pressure plays a key role in tire performance. We've all put change into the air pressure tanks at our local gas stations, and we've all used those clunky tire gauges to determine if air pressure is correct. Or, at least close to correct. 

And that's why we love Accutire...for its spot-on precision with every use. Some people set air pressure, only to forget about it. Tire pressure has to be checked regularly to maintain optimum tire performance, and Accutire makes it easy. Accutire air pressure gauges use digital technology to "accurately" measure air pressure +/- .5 psi every single time. (You don't even have to worry about battery power, as every Accutire gauge comes with lifetime lithium batteries.)

Keep one in your glove compartment or purse for regular, quick checks.

See all Accutire products.

Accutire a Cool new Digital Air Gauge

Friday, July 17, 2009 by Chad Hocker

Just picked up the Accutire Digital Set Point Programmable Air Gauge and so far it's been a good buy.

Compared to the older gauge I had been using this air gauge is pretty cool. 
A few of the features I found helpful.

  • Large easy to read numbers Accutire Digital Air Guage
  • LED flashlight
  • Fits perfectly in my hand
  • 5 year warranty


The LED flashlight and the blue backlit LCD screen came in handy last night, as it was dusk before I was back outside to the check the pressure in my Michelin tires.  I know first thing in the morning is the best time to check air pressure when the tire is cool. However, the first thing to do when you get a cool new product is to check it out right away.