Tyres will lose pressure over time, so check them on a regular basis. Checking pressure once or twice per month is probably not a bad habit. As pressure is affected by heat the tyre pressure should be measure when cold. The manufacture’s recommended pressure should be given in the owners; manual and may be written on the inside of the Driver’s door.
Wheel balancing and wheel alignment are often confused: your car needs both.
- Wheel balancing optimizes each wheel in isolation. A perfect wheel would rotate on the exact centre and have its weight evenly distributed; wheel balancing may attach weights to a tyre in order to bring it nearer to optimal performance. This process looks at a wheel’s performance in isolation.
- Wheel alignment looks at how the four wheels work together. Wheels are aligned in accordance with the manufacture’s specifications. This usually means the wheels are parallel to each other, a situation that reduces uneven wear and prevents the vehicle drifting to one side. Vehicles used for rugged terrain or racing may have their wheel aligned is a different manner to well performing road vehicles.
Check the depth of the tread. The minimum to be road worth is 1.6 mm, but performance is compromised as the tread diminishes, especially in wet weather. Also check to see that the tread wear is even; uneven wear means alignment or balancing needs attention.
All four wheels are usually identical. On some cars the front and rear tyres are different, but the tyres on each axle are always identical.
Brakes can be made to last longer, while maintaining good performance, with good driving technique.