The Importance of Tyres in Road Safety
When you think of the safety features of a car, you’d most likely think of the side mirrors, the seatbelts and the airbags. While these three are certainly on that list, there’s another important part of the car which many vehicle-owners overlook: the tyres.
Tyres Do More Than Just Roll
As the only point of contact between you and the road, tyres play a vital role in ensuring your car is safe to be driven. Just like the shoes you wear on your feet, you’d want your tyres to fit nicely to your car so that they’re able to work in their optimum condition.
Many a time, vehicle owners are not even aware of the condition their tyres are in. Some factors that can lead to your safety being jeopardised include having tyres that are not of the right size, improperly inflated, worn out or defective.
The Consequences of Using Sub-Par Tyres
Tyres have a direct link to the quality of your ride as well as your safety in general. Here are some of the consequences that may arise from neglecting your tyres:
Losing Control Of Your Vehicle
Primarily, defective tyres may lead to you having less control of the car. This situation may also escalate and lead to a blow out, which means you experience a total loss of control over your vehicle.
Increased Braking Distance
The braking distance is how far your vehicle travels before it comes a complete stop (after the brakes are applied). While this can be affected by external factors such as the weather and road conditions, your tyres, too, can affect this distance.
Tyres need to maximise their contact with the road in order to provide a braking distance that is ideal. When this is compromised by improper tyre pressure or an uneven tread, traction between the tyre and the road is reduced, thus leading to an increased braking distance.
Risk of Aquaplaning
Aquaplaning is what happens when a layer of water builds up between your tyre and the surface of the road – also known as the action of losing grip due to wet surfaces.
The treads on your tyres are designed to help water flow through and away from its surface, ensuring you always have contact with the road. When your tyres have shallow or worn out treads, water may build up on the surface of the tyre instead. This creates a layer of water on which your tyres glide, causing you to lose traction and, on a bigger scale, control of your car.
As a safety precaution, a minimum Remaining Tread Depth of 1.6mm is highly recommended to minimise the possibility of such mishaps.
In other words, making sure your tyres are well-maintained and cared for is the quickest way to eliminate risks of losing control while you’re on the road. While it may seem convenient to leave all these complicated car-parts issues to your mechanic, it’s always useful to understand what is going on when you get behind the wheel.
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