Off to work. Heading to the gym. Going to see the latest superhero movie … again. Taking the kids to soccer practice. Road trip! Wherever you’re driving to, the last things on your mind when you jump into your car are the tires.
Makes sense: To most, tires are nondescript, black and round, no big deal. Safe to say, tires get no respect. Think about it: What other parts of a car do we kick? Truth be told, tires are easily one of the most technologically advanced parts of a vehicle, influencing the braking, steering, comfort, handling, safety and fuel efficiency.
How important are tires? Well, they are the only parts actually touching the road and without tires, America stops rolling, literally. Just ask the U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association (USTMA), a trade organization based in Washington, D.C. Among the many things they do — monitoring legislation to environmental concerns — USTMA puts on National Tire Safety Week every year to educate folks on the vital role tires play in our lives every single day.
“USTMA does a fantastic job promoting tire safety and awareness,” said Alan Holtschneider, director of marketing for Yokohama Tire, a longstanding USTMA member.
Yokohama has pitched in with “Tire Tips,” an instructional 10-part video series created to increase consumer awareness and educate the public about a wide variety of tire-related subjects. “We designed the Tire Tips videos to be not only informative, but entertaining as well,” Holtschneider said. “The idea is to really help consumers understand just how important tires actually are and help maintain them for optimum use.”
Viewers can watch Tire Tips at https://www.facebook.com/pg/yokohamatire/videos/ and learn things like how to choose the right tire for your SUV/CUV, how to make your tires last longer, why speed ratings are so important, why you should rotate your tires, and when is a tire repairable?
Holtschneider said two of the most popular videos contain tips about keeping tires properly maintained:
• Check tire pressure at least once a month — this takes about five minutes. Consult the vehicle’s owner’s manual or placard on the driver’s door to determine proper tire pressure. Tire pressure should be checked when the tires are cold.
• Check your tread depth by placing a penny upside down into a tread groove. If you can see all of Lincoln’s head, your tire’s tread has worn down to the legal limit and you need to buy a new tire. Tires should be replaced when the tread is worn down to 2/32 of an inch, the lowest legal limit. It’s best to replace them before they reach 2/32 for optimal performance, especially in bad weather.
For even more tire care and safety tips, visit www.yokohamatire.com/tires-101 or https://www.ustires.org/.