Have #SafeTravels This Summer
Have you planned your #SummerTrip yet? Does your desired destination require long ride? If it does, you better be prepared for anything to happen!
As you drive during the heat of the day, two factors are against you. First, the road surface is warming throughout the day. Second, the more time you spend driving during the heat of the day, the hotter your tires will get. As a matter of fact, tire pressure will increase by about 4 psi (pounds per square inch) after driving for a couple of hours.
The possibility of tire blowouts increase during the months of May through October, when the road surface is the hottest. Under-inflated, over-inflated and worn tires contribute to this issue. Despite the fact that new vehicles are required to have automatic tire pressure monitoring systems, tire blowouts do happen.
How do you take preventative measures?
- Replace worn tires before your trip. Use the old #pennymethod. Simply insert a penny into your tire's tread groove with Lincoln's head upside down and facing you. If you can see all of Lincoln's head, your tread depth is less than 2/32 inch and it's time to replace your tires.
- Check the air level. Carry an air gauge in your car. Before you travel, ensure your tires are filled to the manufacturer’s recommended air level. Also, don’t forget to fill the spare!!
- Check your jack and accessories. Ensure your jack, jack handle, and lug wrench are in the car.
- Other things to have as well. You might also want to have a small can of WD-40 (for loosening lug nuts), a pair of gloves (to keep your hands clean), an old towel (to sit on the ground as needed), a small block of 2x4 wood (to chock the other tires if you have to jack up the car), a flashlight or headlamp (for night time tire changes), and a reflective safety triangle (to place behind your car as a cautionary measure).
- Other recommended items: A bottle of water that no one touches. Changing a tire in the summer heat will take it out of you. A fresh bottle of water is always welcome!
If you do have a blowout, below are some tips for getting to a safe location:
- Recognize the tire blowout. You will hear a loud boom and feel your vehicle slowing down. Then the car will pull strongly to the left or right, depending on which tire is damaged.
- Drive through a tire blowout. It’s important to strongly hold your wheel. Also, don’t press the brake and let your car slow down gradually. Once you are at a safe speed, pull to the side of the road and activate your emergency flashers.
Keep in mind that a spare tire is only recommended for emergencies and should not be driven for long distances or at high speeds.
Farmers Mutual Insurance
749 Wilson Road, Newberry, SC 29108