Alaska Car Accident Attorney
Your tires perform a number of important functions such as turning, accelerating, and braking. Without good traction with the pavement, none of these are possible. If you doubt this, consider what happens when you hit a section of black ice: you can't turn, accelerate, or brake.
Without the stability provided by your tires' traction, your car couldn't stay on the road for long. Their condition affects your gas mileage, handling, and safety. Unfortunately, the tire care mistakes of many car owners endanger themselves and others on the road. Here are three of them:
Adding Air Only When Your Tire Pressure Looks Low
By the time your tire looks like it needs air because the sidewall bulges too much, it's probably more than 20 percent under inflated. Under inflation not only diminishes your car's handling and wastes gas, but also damages the tire. It weakens the tire's rubber because it causes excessive flexing. Tire blowouts frequently happen on hot summer days because tires weakened by under inflation can't tolerate the added stress of hot pavement.
Using Old Tires
Regardless of their tread condition, never use tires older than six years. The tire's rubber oxidizes over time, and UV exposure breaks down chemicals in the rubber. This makes the rubber brittle, which causes small cracks on the surface and then progresses to sidewall damage. At some point the tire fails, sometimes as a blowout while driving.
This is a danger when tread wear doesn't force you to get new tires because you rarely use your car. Another danger is not replacing a spare tire that's older than six years. An exception to the six-year rule is when the tire manufacturer makes a different recommendation.
Not Checking Tires after Hitting Potholes, Road Debris, or Curbs
Nails and other sharp objects aren't the only things on the road that can damage your tires. Driving over a pothole at highway speeds, hitting a piece of lumber, or hitting the curb may cause sufficient damage to immediately blow out the tire.
Sometimes it merely weakens the tire enough to cause a blowout after hundreds of miles of subsequent use. When you run over or strike something on the road, check the tire for damage. Keep an eye on the tire afterwards and look for a bulge or blister in the sidewall. Replace the tire immediately upon spotting signs of damage.
If a negligent driver injures you in an accident, seek the legal advice of an experienced Alaska car accident attorney. Contact us today.