Why it’s essential to keep checking your tyres?

Posted on May 29, 2022 at 9:39 am

When you have a car there are so many things to keep an eye on to keep it running well like checking the oil regularly and ensuring the car is serviced and up to date with its MOT.  Often the cars tyres get a bit neglected until the tyre gets a puncture or worse has a blowout. However, driving with damaged or overworn tyres is not only illegal but dangerous too. If you are caught by the police for having bald tyres they can impose 3 penalty points on your licence for each tyre. That could mean a total of 12 penalty points for 4 bald tyres and possibly a driving ban.

When a tyre is bald it means that there is not sufficient tread depth on the tyre. This is particularly dangerous on wet road conditions as the tread on a tyre helps disperse the water away from where the tyre makes contact with the road. If the water cannot be moved away from that area you risk the car aquaplaning and losing control. Even in dry conditions a bald tyre is dangerous as it doesn’t cause enough friction between the tyres surface and the road meaning you are more likely to skid and less likely to be able to stop the car in case of an emergency. Get your tyres checked regularly to avoid an accident and a possible driving ban.

Posted in Tyre

Getting your car ready for summer

Posted on April 5, 2022 at 3:52 pm

Most of us are familiar with the process of getting our cars ready for winter but did you know that the summer months can also put your vehicle under more strain than usual with issues such as overheating and problems with air conditioning.

During the summer with outside temperatures rising its important to ensure that your car engine has the right level of coolant added. Coolant is vital to keeping your engine working without causing the car to overheat so always check these levels regularly and don’t just rely on your dashboard computer alerting you to this issue.

Throughout the winter you may not have used your air conditioning in your car so you may not even notice there’s an issue until we get the first hot day. Most air conditioning in cars needs re-gassing from time to time, dependent on the level of use it’s had and the age of the car. It may be useful to get your air conditioning checked at a reputable garage where they can run a test for any leaks in the system and re-gas if needed.

Checking your tyres during the summer months is also vital as hot road surfaces may cause faster wearing of your tyres. Tyre pressure can also increase during warm weather so you’ll need to be particularly careful not to over inflate your tyres.

Posted in Tyre

Staring up a tyre fitting company

Posted on December 7, 2021 at 4:57 pm

If you are a mechanic and currently work for a garage you may decide that you would like to set up your own business. May mechanics and tyres fitters start by becoming a mobile mechanic. This allows them to keep their overheads down to start with until they have got another business to justify having a garage. Setting up a car garage is not cheap as often a lot of the machinery and tools you will need can be very costly and quickly rack up into the thousands.

Lots of mobile mechanics do most of the work at people’s home address or at their home but then have a ramp at a garage that they can rent out occasionally. They may even sub any more complex work out to another garage. This can work really well but you are then relying on another garage to get the job done in the time that you have quoted.

Mobile mechanics can make a lot of money as lots of people would rather have someone come to their place of work rather than have to have time off to take their car to a garage. Lots of mobile mechanics offer to collect your vehicle take it in for a service or an MOT and then deliver it back to you.

Posted in Tyre

Are part worn tyres ok to use?

Posted on November 27, 2021 at 9:43 am

If you need to replace your tyres on your vehicle then you may consider buying and fitting part worn tyres. Tyres can be expensive and you usually find that you need more than one replacing at a time.

Although you may think you are saving money, it is not always economical to buy the cheapest tyres as they may decrease your fuel economy or simply not last very long, meaning they need to be replaced sooner. 

One way to try and cut down on the cost is to purchase part worn tyres. Part worn tyres are often tyres that have been shipped in from other parts of Europe or have been removed from cars due to be scrapped in the UK. Rules in other parts of the EU state that tyres have to be changed at 3mm as opposed to 1.6 in the UK. Most garages in England will recommend that you change your tyres when you have about 2-3 mm left on them as this is when there is quite a bit of evidence that it can negatively affect braking distances. If you buy part worns with only 3-4 mm on them already then you won’t have to drive many miles before they should ideally be changed.

Posted in Tyre

Shopping around for the best tyre prices

Posted on September 29, 2021 at 10:39 am

The cost of tyres can vary drastically from garage to garage so it is always worth getting a few quotes before proceeding. It can be hard to compare quotes as not all garages will sell the same make of tyre. Tyres are often priced in tiers of budget, mid-range and prestige and the prices usually go up accordingly. Some tyre fitting centres of garages will be able to tell you the details of the tyre such as fuel economy, road noise and wet grip. This information is important but you may need to do your own research as most garages will not offer this information freely.

When comparing this information, you can often find budget tyres that perform really well in a number of these areas. Tyres prices also vary massively between sizes. Larger vehicles such as 4 x 4’s and SUV’s usually have the most expensive tyres and can cost in excess of £100 each just for budgets.

You may assume that larger tyre centres and garage will be able to sell you the tyres for less than an independent garage, but this is often not the case. Never run the risk of driving with bad tyres as not only is it dangerous you can also get points on your license.

Posted in Tyre

Should you leave a slow puncture?

Posted on October 13, 2020 at 4:23 pm

Punctures are a nightmare and the problem is they can happen at any time and often occur at the most inconvenient moment. You may not be aware that you have a puncture for some time if it is only slowly leaking air. It is rare to have to pump one tyre up a lot more than the others so if this happens it is likely there is a puncture.

You may decide to keep pumping the tyre up and driving on it but this is not advisable as a punctured tyre is not as safe and can easily become a flat tyre. Flat tyres can make you lose control of the vehicle and affect braking.

Although it is frustrating, especially if they tyre is fairly new or has a lot of tread left on it, it is important to get the tyre fixed or replaced as soon as possible. Tyre repairs often only cost around ten to fifteen pounds but they can only be repaired if the damage is in a certain area and not too bad. IF they cannot repair the tyre then you will have to pay the price for a new one. Some tyres are now sold with a puncture lifetime guarantee so although you pay more initially, you may save money if you are susceptible to getting punctures.

Posted in Tyre

Do your tyres have the correct tyre pressure?

Posted on September 22, 2020 at 12:45 pm

It is essential that the pressure in your vehicle tyres are checked regularly at least once a month because the pressure in your vehicles tyres affects performance, fuel economy and most of all safety. Over time the air in the tyre can escape, and the pressure will drop and so the surface of the tyre, the part of the vehicle that makes direct contact with the road surface will have an impact on braking and grip possibly causing an accident if sudden braking occurs.

It is easy to find out the specific pressure that each tyre should have as it is stated in the vehicle handbook and is also usually on a plate inside the driver’s door which can be seen when the door is open. Otherwise a quick look online for your vehicle should give you this information.

In order to check your tyre pressure yourself you will need a tyre pressure gauge which may be a manual one or one that is incorporated into a pump. The valve will be on the wheel rim so simply unscrew the cap, push the tyre gauge onto the valve and the readout will give you the pressure.

If the figure that is shown on the display is different to the handbook figures you will need to top up the air with a pump that plugs into the cigarette lighter in the car or alternatively use the air pump at a local garage.

Posted in Tyre

Is your car in need of a wheel alignment?

Posted on March 11, 2019 at 9:31 am

Some drivers have a wheel alignment done every time they have a new set of tyres fitted or every 6 – 12 months, whereas others may not have one done until they start to notice something wrong. So how can you tell if your car needs a wheel alignment? Often there are some subtle differences that you will notice when driving that can give it away. If you notice that the car tends to drift slightly to one side when driving down a straight road or that your steering wheel is not straight when your wheels are, then you need to get your car booked in for a wheel alignment.

Wheels can become out of line for a number of reasons. It can just happen over time or it may have been caused by hitting a pothole or mounting a pavement.

If your wheels are out of alignment you will often notice that your tyres wear unevenly and that you need to replace them more often. The cost of a wheel alignment varies from garage to garage and make and model of vehicle but often costs around £30-£40 for a standard 2 wheel alignment. This is a small price to pay to ensure your car is driving at its best and that you are maintaining your tyres.

Posted in Tyre

Your tyres may be legal but are they safe?

Posted on January 28, 2019 at 9:52 am

With the bad weather hitting most of the UK this week, we as drivers must take responsibility for our tyres. It is important that we not only heck if they are legal but have plenty of tread left. The legal limit for tyres is 1.6 mm of tread depth but most garages recommend you change them at about 2.8-2.5mm as after this it starts to affect stopping distances. In the snow, ice or rain stopping distances are longer so with bad tyres you may struggle to stop on time. New tyres come with about 8mm of tread on them so should last a good while (depending on how many miles you do).
The other thing to check for is damage to the tyre. It may be that you have plenty of tread but if you have a puncture or bulge then you need to get it repaired or replaced as soon as possible.
The other thing to look out for on tyres is perishing. If you do very few miles a year then your tyres may not wear down enough tread to be changed for years. But overtime the rubber will start to perish and split / crack. This can cause blow outs and it is advisable to replace any tyres with this type of damage.

Posted in Tyre

What to expect when you need a puncture repaired

Posted on April 29, 2018 at 10:31 am

For most people who aren’t necessarily car savvy it can be quite a daunting prospect to take your car into a garage alone for fear of being bamboozled into buying something that you don’t need or being over charged for work done to your vehicle. For services and routine work you may be able to sort someone to go with you but if you have something unexpected like a puncture you may need to go to a garage (basically whichever is nearby at the time). The key things to remember are that if the garage can repair the tyre its likely to cost around £20 this is generally if it’s a minor puncture maybe caused by driving over a screw or similar object causing a small hole. However if the puncture is caused by an impact trauma such as hitting a pot hole you may need a whole new tyre and also the wheels would need to be balanced this is obviously more expensive dependant on what type of tyre you go for. The issue with the latter incident is that if something has impacted the tyre enough to burst it, it can also cause other areas of the car a lot of damage such as a bending the axel and that can be very expensive and sometimes can in fact be a write-off. If in doubt never be afraid of asking for a second opinion.

Posted in Tyre

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