Updated: 03/08/17 : 11:46:25
The cost of driving on under-inflated tyres has
risen over an 18-month period, in line with the cost of fuel – according to
tyre manufacturer Michelin.
In a statement, the Company says tyre pressures
have a direct impact on a vehicle’s fuel economy, with under-inflation
increasing both fuel usage and carbon emissions, whilst also posing serious
safety risks to motorists and other road users.
Data collected by Michelin over the last 10
years shows that, on average, at least 60 per cent of motorists in the UK drive
on under-inflated tyres, and half of those are at dangerously under-inflated
levels (more than 8psi).
Tests carried out have shown that a tyre which
is 20 per cent under-inflated will typically return 20 per cent less mileage
before needing to be replaced. This equates to loss of 5,000 miles on a tyre
which offers a potential mileage of 25,000 miles.
As well as increasing fuel bills, Michelin says under-inflation
makes a vehicle’s steering less precise, increases stopping distances and leads
to a higher risk of aquaplaning. It also reduces a tyre’s endurance
capabilities, making it more prone to damage and possible rapid deflation.
Commenting, Jonathan Layton, Michelin’s Head of
Fleet, explains: “Driving on tyres just a few psi below the manufacturer’s
recommended pressures will reduce a vehicle’s fuel efficiency on every single
journey. As fuel costs rise, the impact of this under-inflation is pushing
running costs higher.
“Maintaining accurate tyre pressures is a small
but simple step to improving fuel efficiency, maximising vehicle safety and
reducing carbon emissions,” he adds.
Tyre pressure check adviceMichelin advises motorists to check tyre
pressures – including the spare – at least every month and before any long
journeys. Pressures should ideally be checked when the tyres are cold, meaning
they have not been used in the last two hours or have covered less than two
miles at low speed.