Tyre Kicking Motorists Should Tread Carefully

Tyre Kicking Motorists Should Tread Carefully

24 April 2019

Halfords Autocentres advises motorists not to slip up on tyre safety

Halfords Autocentres recent survey of over 20,000 motorists has found that almost a third of motorists (32%) believe that kicking a tyre is an adequate test of whether they are properly inflated.

More worrying was the finding that almost two-in-five motorists (40%) have no idea what the minimum legal tyre tread depth is, a factor that might explain that just over two thirds (37%) of them have skidded on the roads during wet weather, which has been forecast for the Easter period. In fact, 58% have cancelled a journey because of poor weather.

40% of those polled also have no idea how to read the age of a tyre. The correct method is to read the embedded code on the tyre’s sidewall which tells you when the tyre is manufactured.

Halfords Autocentres Tyre Expert, Bob Masters’ says “It’s an old cliché but we’re surprised to see that many motorists still use this test. Unfortunately kicking a car tyre will tell you absolutely nothing about its roadworthiness. Whether you drive a Toyota or a Tesla the only thing keeping your car in contact with the road is your tyres, so it’s vitally important that they are given a thorough inspection to see that they are correctly inflated and the tread depth is adequate.

“The difference between 1.6mm and 3mm of tread is an extra eight metres of stopping distance in wet conditions and the maximum fine for driving on an illegal tyre is £2,500 – something worth considering when you’re next washing the car or filling up with fuel and could take the time to carry out a quick check.”

Worn tyres and smaller tread depth can reduce braking and steering ability, especially in unpredictable weather and wet driving conditions. An extra couple of millimetres’ tread depth can mean up to eight metres of stopping distance in wet weather.

The poll also found that many motorists are ill-prepared for a break-down with a surprising one-in-ten (11%) not knowing whether their car had a spare wheel or puncture repair kit.

The maximum fine for driving with illegal tyres is £2,500. Drivers can easily check their tyres when washing the car or filling up with fuel. Or visit a Halfords Autocentres where our technicians will do it for you for free. After completing millions of tyre checks to help keep Britain’s cars on the roads, we’re proud to offer a free tyre health check for every motorist.

Halfords Autocentres also recommend you do the following checks yourself as good practice, and to ensure maximum safety on the road:

  • Change your tyres in pairs – here’s why:  https://www.halfordsautocentres.com/advice/tyres-advice/why-change-tyres-in-pairs
  • Check tread depth - the wider your tyres are the increased risk of aquaplaning in wet conditions. Make sure you change your tyres if the depth of tread on your tyres drops to 2mm
  • Inspect the tyre conditions - look for unusual lumps and bumps or irregular wear. If you spot anything go to your nearest Halfords Autocentre and get it checked out
  • Keep your air pressure at the right level - refer to your car manual or stickers on the fuel flap and check the pressure is correct for your car's load

Halfords Autocentres is CAT’s Garage Chain of the Year 2019 and there are over 300 Autocentres nationwide CAT Magazine Award

For further information on free tyre checks visit https://www.halfordsautocentres.com/tyres/free-tyre-check

For more information or to book visit www.halfordsautocentres.co.uk