When temperatures fluctuate drastically, it’s common for a car’s tire pressure to change, causing the tire pressure monitor light to activate. However, this doesn’t mean that you should ignore the notification.
A spokesman for the Rubber Manufacturers Association explained “that yellow Tire Pressure Monitoring System light isn’t a friendly warning to put a little air in the tires — it’s an emergency warning that a tire has lost at least a quarter of its pressure.”
Driving on tires with low pressure can cause serious damage to the tires and your car. Low tire pressure will cause your car not to be able to handle steering and braking properly and can lead to blowouts, flat tires and premature wear.
On the flip side, tire pressure that is too high causes traction and gripping issues and a more bouncy ride.
What is the Correct Tire Pressure for Your Car?
Check your owners guide to find out what the recommended tire pressure is for your specific car. This information is also sometimes found on the inside of the driver’s door.
Do not necessarily follow what is listed on the actual tire. That number is usually the maximum pressure that the tire can handle and not what is ideal for your vehicle.
It’s a good idea to inspect your tires on a regular basis. Also, keep in mind to check all four of your tires. Just because one or two are at an acceptable pressure, does not mean the remaining tires are not experiencing issues.
What To Do When Tires Keep Losing Pressure
If a tire continues to lose pressure after checking and adding air, there is probably a leak or other defect in the tire. Do not panic. Replacing one (or two, three or a whole set), does not have to drain your bank account.