In the wake of astronomically-high gasoline prices, AAA reminds motorists to save gas and money with one simple action: check your tires. Properly inflated tires greatly improve your vehicle’s fuel economy.
AAA Oklahoma estimates that an Oklahoma motorist who drives an average of 12,000 miles annually on tires that are under-inflated by 5-8 PSI (pounds per square inch of air pressure) is wasting up to 50 gallons of gasoline, or $192.50 (at $3.85 a gallon). That's close to the cost of a week's worth of groceries ($226) for a family of four, according to the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. If there are two cars in the family, that total can reach $380.
"By taking five minutes each month to check your tires, you can save a lot of money and gasoline over time," said Chuck Mai, spokesman for AAA Oklahoma. "Plus, you’ll reduce vehicle emissions and increase our state’s drive toward greener living."
Vehicle handling can be adversely affected by improperly inflated tires. Under-inflated tires run hot, which can lead to tire failure and a possible crash. Over-inflated tires can have uneven wear and make tires more susceptible to road hazard damage.
AAA recommends motorists regularly check tires when cool for uneven or excessive tread wear as well as proper inflation. Refer to the vehicle's door-jamb or glove box for original equipment specifications or the manufacturer of the replacement tire for proper inflation. The correct PSI that's right for your tires is located on the vehicle's tire information label – not molded into the sidewall of the tire.
For a free, downloadable copy of AAA’s “Gas Watcher’s Guide,” containing more tips to help you conserve fuel, visit http://www.AAA.com and click on AAA News & Safety, Fuel News & Tools. Or write to AAA Tips, 722 N. Broadway, Suite 401, Oklahoma City, OK 73102.