Tips for Truckers to Avoid Tire Failure
by Apex Capital | June 11, 2014
The increased heat of the summer months can be hard on truck tires. On a hot day, highway surface temperatures can easily top 150 degrees! Summer temperatures can lead to heat buildup, which can weaken tires and wreak havoc on treads. Truck tires can easily reach explosive temperatures if they are under-inflated or over-inflated, which can lead to thrown tire treads (often called gators) and an increased risk of accidents or breakdowns.
Tips for Tire Safety
Check Tire Pressure: Truck drivers should check the inflation pressure in each tire when tires are cold or have sat more than three hours. Poorly inflated truck tires can cause excess heat build-up that damages tires and leads to blowouts. Proper inflation helps to significantly reduce such blowouts. More often, over or under-inflation causes tires to blow rather than wear. Truckers should inflate tires to the recommended setting found on the driver’s side door sticker, doorpost or owner’s manual.
Check Tires Often: Drivers should frequently conduct truck tire inspections, as often as twice a day in the summer. Tires will typically lose up to 1 psi per month, and tire pressure drops about 1 psi for every 10-degree drop in air temperature, making it important for truckers to monitor their tire pressure and check for uneven wear.
Check for Signs of Tread-wear:
It’s important to check that truck tires have enough tread and are wearing evenly before hauling any freight. Uneven wear can lead to tire failure. Truckers should check that all grooves are visible. To be sure, drivers can check the tread using the “penny test.” A tire’s tread should be deep enough to touch the top of Lincoln’s head, when a penny is inserted into the tread. Low tread, or bald tires, are unsafe and should be replaced.
Don’t Overload Your Truck: A truck and its tires are designed to operate safely up to its specific load limits. These limits are shown in a truck’s owner’s manual and should not be exceeded. Increased weight can lead to extra stress on a tire and when combined with hot summer temperatures, can lead to tire failure.
Save Money on Tires
Looking to save money on tires? By participating in the Apex Capital Tire Discount Program, trucking companies can save big on the cost of tires. This program, designed specifically for Apex Capital, allows Apex Capital clients to get discounts at TA Petro by presenting their company’s DOT number.
This means significant savings since the average truck goes through approximately 18 tires every two years!
To learn more about the Apex Capital Tire Discount program, and how to become an Apex Client, call 1-855-369-2739
Thanks to our sources: Team Run Smart, The Weather Channel, Consumer Reports, KHOU, Rubber Manufacturers Association, TireBuyer.com.