It is essential to maintain proper tire pressure for your vehicle’s performance and your family’s safety. You can keep the appropriate tire pressure through regular checks using a tire gauge. If you do not know how to use a tire gauge, you might be getting the wrong reading, which may result in your over or underinflating your tires.
To get started, find out the recommended tire pressure for your vehicle. It is usually posted on the driver’s door ledge or doorframe. You may also find the information inside the glove box compartment or in the vehicle owner’s manual.
Be sure to check the tires when they are cold. Morning is a great time to pull out your gauge before you have driven the car for the day. Be sure to get readings from all of your tires, including the spare tire, if you have one. Check your tires at least once a month because they tend to lose pressure over time.
The following are the most common types of tire gauges:
- Conventional tire pressure gauge – This gauge is about the size of a pencil with a metal exterior and a plastic rod in the interior that lengthens when the gauge is attached to the stem of the tire. The air rushing from the tire forces the rod to extend. The notches along the side of the rod will show how much pressure has been exerted. If the rod reaches a large number 3 and a small number 2, your tire pressure is 32 PSI.
- Electronic tire pressure gauge – This type of gauge will give you a highly accurate pressure reading. You can measure your tire pressure using this device by simply turning it on and pressing it against the nozzle of your tire. It will display the pressure right away. An electronic tire pressure gauge costs more than the conventional alternative, but the higher cost is offset by its accuracy. It is important, though, to keep the battery charged. Otherwise, you could get an inaccurate reading—or no reading at all.
Regardless of the type of pressure gauge you have, practice using it. Practice will make it a lot easier to use the gauge when you really need it. If you are not sure if your pressure readings are correct, you can always take your car to the nearest Utah tire store. Utah tires often take a beating due to roads weathered by the state’s rugged climate. Make sure to keep a close eye on your tire pressure to avoid problems on the road.