Family Safety: Why you should check your car tyres

23 March 2016

Dear friend,

In a couple of weeks we are taking a little road trip. I always remember my dad checking the car before we went away and I encourage hubby to do the same. I would like to say I am very hands on when it comes to car maintenance but I'd be lying! We have followed the traditional roles and the car is definitely hubby's domain. Something I regretted the last time I had a flat tyre!

My parents were visiting and we decided to have a special day out together and planned a trip to the zoo. You know what it's like trying to get a family ready, well add in two extra adults to share the bathroom and it seemed to take us all ages. Anyway breakfast finished we all squeezed into the car; I don't know who was more excited to see the tigers, grandad or the boys. However, no sooner had I set off than I could feel the wheel pulling in one direction and stopped quickly. We had all failed to notice the flat tyre as we piled excitedly into the car.

Rather embarrassingly I had no idea where the spare was or what type of tyre I would need to buy to replace the punctured one. Fortunately for me we live around the corner from a garage and we got the spare put on quite quickly and then went to get a replacement from a nearby tyre specialist. If you are totally clueless, like me, you can always check out the website from Point S, they have this brilliant tool that allows you to put in your registration and number and they tell you the type and size of tyre that you will need. I didn't realise that you should stick to the same size and type - and ideally the same brand and tread pattern - when renewing tyres.

According to a recent survey almost nine out of ten drivers do not check the overall condition of their tyres as often as they should. The statistics found that 78% of men said they were completely confident they knew how to check the overall condition of the tyres on their vehicle by themselves. Women were less confident at 43%.

Why you should check your car tyres

A faulty tyre can pose a serious safety risk. If your tyres are worn, your stopping distance is increased and you are more likely to get a puncture. As well as being dangerous, driving with worn tyres can also be costly with the fine for one tyre being up to 2500 pound, rising to a possible 10,000 for four. But who can put a cost on the lives of their family? Thank goodness we did not get our puncture whilst driving at speed on the motorway, I hate to think what could have happened.

Basic legal requirements (AA)

  • Tyres must be compatible with others on the car and generally in good physical condition
  • Tyres must be correctly inflated to the vehicle manufacturer's recommended pressure
  • Tread depth must be above the legal minimum which for passenger cars is 1.6mm throughout a continuous band in the centre 3/4 of the tread and around the entire circumference
  • You don't have to carry a spare and it doesn't have to meet the legal requirements while it's stowed away. It may however affect breakdown cover if you don't carry a serviceable spare

How long is it since you last checked your tyres? The advice is to check monthly.  Point S, have over 201 UK tyre centres (click here to check they have a location near you) and further information is available on their website to show how to check your tyre pressure and tread and how to change your tyres. Go check it out. As we head into Spring and start having more family days out, involving longer journeys it becomes more important to check your tyres, especially after driving through all those winter pot holes. Put your family's safety first. 

I am not going to wait for hubby to check the tyres this time. I'm off to do it myself! Come on ladies why don't you join me. Let's beat that 43% statistic next time.

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post.

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