Flat tires are a significant inconvenience, especially when you’re out in the boonies or on a major highway. Driving on a flat tire may be a tempting solution to get off the side of the road, but that isn’t a great idea. Long story short, no, don’t drive on a flat tire. Continue reading to learn why and how to prevent flat tires.
Why Can’t I Drive On a Flat Tire?
It may be necessary to travel a short distance on a flat tire, even to pull over to the side of the road. Driving on a flat tire will endanger yourself and your passengers and seriously damage your vehicle. Not only does driving on a flat tire dangerously decrease your vehicle’s handling, but it can also cause structural damage to the wheel, brakes, alignment, and other components like your suspension and steering system. While it may seem the simplest solution, driving to the nearest tire shop can cause more damage than a simple flat tire.
So, What Do I Do When I Have a Flat Tire?
“Prevention is not waiting for bad things to happen; it’s preventing things from happening in the first place,” said Don McPherson. While you typically hear this quote concerning health, it also applies here. Taking precautions to prevent a flat tire, to begin with, is best. You can do a few things regularly to minimize the chances of a flat or blowout.
If you don’t have a spare or sealant, call for roadside assistance like AAA. If you are within the Las Vegas Valley, One Hour Tires is a mobile tire repair service that can come to you and fix your flat tire.
Check Your Tire Pressure Regularly
The number one rule of tire maintenance is checking your tire pressure regularly. It’s recommended to check the pressure on all your tires, including the spare, at least once a month. Tire pressure gauges are inexpensive and can help save you from tire trouble down the road.
Some modern vehicles have a tire pressure monitoring system, or TPMS, installed and will warn you if the pressure is low in one or more tires. Unfortunately, it’s common for the TPMS to recognize the issue only when your tires lose a significant amount of air, so manually checking with a tire gauge to double-check is a smart idea.
Check your tire pressure when the tires are “cold, meaning at least three hours after driving. Driving with underinflated tires can lead to lower fuel efficiency, and they are more prone to wear and punctures.
Inspect & Rotate Your Tires Regularly
Typically, rotating your tires every 5,000 to 10,000 miles would be best. It’s a good rule of thumb to have your tires rotated when you get the oil changed. Also, visually inspect your tires for tread wear and signs of damage. Tires should have a minimum tread depth of 3/32 inches and no signs of cracking, bulging sidewalls, or bubbling. Check out our learning resources to learn how to check your tread depth: How to Check Tire Tread Depth – One Hour Tires Las Vegas
Stay Within the Tire Load Limit
Along with the recommended tire pressure, tires have a maximum load rating and maximum pressure printed on the sidewall. Heavier loads put more strain on your tires, and exceeding their limit could lead to a blowout. If necessary, increase your tire pressure to handle the increased weight but stay within the maximum tire pressure limit. Learn how to read your tire size here: How to Read a Tire Size – One Hour Tires Las Vegas
Keep an Eye Out for Road Hazards
Roadways are full of hazards like potholes, nails, and pieces of glass. Potholes and large road debris can damage your tires without puncturing them, but they may cause cuts and bulges that could lead to a flat tire or severe tire damage. If you know you’ll drive through a construction zone, consider taking an alternative route to avoid construction debris.
One Hour Tires Provides Mobile Tire Repair!
Are you stuck on the Las Vegas Beltway with a flat tire? Our team of experts at One Hour Tires can come to you and repair or replace your flat in no time! Not only can we help you in an emergency, but we can also come to your own home to service your vehicle’s tires. Give us a call today!