Checking Car Tyre Pressure: What Is It & How To Check It?

Have you ever noticed your car drifting slightly while driving, or experienced a bumpier than usual ride? These could be signs of under-inflated tyres. Maintaining proper tyre pressure is essential for safe and economical driving in the UK. This guide will comprehensively explain why and how to check your tyre pressure regularly, ensuring a smooth and safe journey.

Checking Car Tyre Pressure: How to Do It?

Checking your car tyre pressure is an essential element of vehicle maintenance that ensures road safety and maximum fuel economy. Here are a few steps on how to check tyre pressure:


1. Find the Recommended Pressure:

First, consult the manufacturer's manual or the label on the inside of the driver's side door jamb. This will provide you with the required tyre pressure for your car in pounds per square inch (PSI) or bar.

2. Use a Pressure Gauge:

To get accurate pressure readings, use a tyre pressure gauge, which can be found at most car parts shops and even some petrol stations.

3. Check the Tyre Pressure:

Unscrew the valve cap from the tire's valve stem. Place the pressure gauge firmly on the valve stem until you hear a hiss of air, and the gauge displays the tyre pressure.

4. Compare with Recommended Pressure:

Check the gauge reading against the recommended pressure for your vehicle. If the pressure is too low, inflate the tyre. If it is too high, release some air.

5. Pressure Adjustment:

To add air, use a petrol station's air compressor or a portable air pump from home. Attach the pump's nozzle to the valve stem and add air in short bursts, monitoring the pressure often to prevent overinflation. If you need to release air, use the little pin on the rear of the pressure gauge or a valve stem tool.

6. Repeat for all Tyres:

Always check the pressure on all four tyres, including the spare if you have one. The required pressures for the front and rear tyres may differ, so check both.

7. Replace the Valve Cover:

After checking and adjusting the tyre pressure, screw the valve cover firmly back on to prevent dirt and debris from entering the valve stem.

8. Regular Maintenance:

Check your tyre pressure at least once a month, especially before long trips. Remember that temperature changes can alter tyre pressure, so be extra cautious during extreme weather conditions.

Why Car Tyre Pressure Check is so Important?

Regular Checking of tyre pressure is an essential aspect of vehicle maintenance, as it ensures safety, long-lasting tyres and many more. Below are a few common reasons why checking tyre pressure for cars is so important.

How to Check Car’s Tyre Pressure: Metric Vs PSI

To measure your car's tyre pressure, you can use either the bar (metric) or pounds per square inch (PSI) method, which are both widely used and frequently offered combined in user manuals or on tyre pressure stickers. If you need to convert between the two, remember that

one bar = Approximately 14.5 PSI

Most gas stations provide options for both bar and PSI measures, making it simple to find the right pressure for your tyres. A dependable home tyre pressure monitor will also often display readings in both bar and PSI for added convenience and accuracy.

How to Find the Right Pressure?

Finding the optimal tyre pressure for your vehicle is critical for safety, fuel efficiency and tyre durability. Understanding the significance of ideal tyre pressure is critical for maintaining the best performance, safety, and life of your vehicle's tyres. By following suggested inflation levels and keeping an eye on tyre conditions, you may improve your driving experience while reducing the chance of accidents or reakdowns. The table below can help you understand the correct inflation, overinflation, and underinflation, along with their effects:

Aspect Correct Inflation Tyre Under Inflation Tyre Over Inflation Tyre
Appearance Evenly inflated, with no obvious bulges or lines. Sidewalls bulge, giving the illusion of being too spherical. Flattened look, particularly at the bottom.
Performance Excellent traction, and fuel efficiency. Reduced traction, rough ride, and higher danger of blowouts. Reduced fuel efficiency, impaired handling, and uneven wear.
Safety Maintains stability and control while braking and turning. Increased risk of Hydroplaning, and braking efficiency dropped. Reduced stability, higher likelihood of tyre failure.
Tyre Wear Wear patterns are consistent across the tyre tread. Wear patterns are focused on the middle of the tread. Wear patterns may be seen on the tread edges.
Recommended Pressure For the appropriate PSI (pounds per square inch), refer to your vehicle's handbook or the placard inside the driver's side door frame. Typically, 10% or more than the acceptable PSI. Usually, 10% or more below the acceptable PSI.
Maintenance Tips Tyre pressure should be checked regularly using a trustworthy gauge. Adjust the pressure as needed based on temperature and driving conditions. Over-inflation of tyres can lead to premature wear & reduced traction. Regularly check tyre pressure and adjust, as necessary. Regularly check tyre pressure and inflate to the required level. Pay attention to indicators of underinflation, such as poor handling and higher-fuel intake.

Slow Punctures

Slow punctures can be inconvenient and sometimes dangerous on the road. Here's an overview of everything you should know about slow punctures:

How Can Slow Punctures Occur and Can I Drive with It?

Slow punctures are caused by small objects like nails or screws entering the tire's tread, allowing air to escape gradually. Driving with an underinflated tire can cause uneven tire wear, poor fuel economy, and tire failure. It can also affect your vehicle's handling and braking, increasing the risk of an accident. If you suspect a slow puncture, get it fixed immediately.

Should I Change My Tyre due to a Gradual Puncture?

To decide whether to change your tyre due to a gradual puncture, assess the damage severity and location. If it's repairable in the tread region, a patch or plug should work. But if it's close to the sidewall or the tyre is heavily damaged, replacement may be necessary. Consult a tyre specialist for advice.

FAQS on Car Tyre Air Pressure

1. How can I determine the tyre pressure for my car?

The recommended tyre pressure for your car can usually be found in the owner's manual, on a label located inside the driver's door jamb, or on the inside of the fuel filler flap. Alternatively, you can search online for your car's make, model, and year to find the information.

2. Can I check my tyre pressure at the fuel station?

Yes, many fuel stations have tyre pressure gauges and air pumps for consumers to use. Some may need payment, while others provide air for free or with the purchase of gasoline.

3. What Pressure should my tyres be?

Tyre pressure guidelines vary for every vehicle. To determine the right pressure, see your vehicle's handbook or the label on the driver's side door jamb.

4. How often should you check tyre pressure?

It is advised that you check your tyre pressure at least once a month, especially before lengthy excursions. Extreme temperature variations might alter tyre pressure, therefore check it more regularly under these situations.

5. How often should I change my tyres?

Tyre replacement durations vary according to tread wear, driving patterns and road conditions. Tyres should be replaced when the tread depth reaches 2/32 of an inch or if they show evident symptoms of wear, such as cracks, bulges, or uneven wear patterns.

6. Should I purchase an air compressor?

Having access to an air compressor can help you quickly inflate tyres at home or on the go. It can save you time and money compared to using gas station air pumps, especially if you regularly need to alter your tyre pressure.

7. How to put air in tyres and how much air to put in a tyre?

To put air in the tyre first find a petrol station with an air pump. Remove the valve stem cap and connect the air hose to the valve stem. Add air in brief bursts and use a gauge to check the pressure often. Pump up to the proper PSI (pounds per square inch) listed in your owner's handbook or on the driver's door jamb.

8. Does higher tyre pressure improve mileage?

In some circumstances, slightly increased tyre pressure can increase fuel economy by lowering rolling resistance. However, it is critical not to overinflate tyres, since this can cause uneven wear and poor traction, compromising handling and safety.

9. Where can I check my tyre pressure and obtain free air?

Many service stations, car dealerships and auto repair businesses provide free tyre pressure checks and air fill-ups as a favour to consumers. Furthermore, some petrol stations provide free air with the purchase of fuel.

10. Are tyre pressures tested during a MOT?

Yes, tyre pressure is one of the parameters assessed during a MOT (Ministry of Transport) test in several nations. To prevent failing the MOT, ensure that your tyres are properly inflated before driving your car in for an examination.

11. Is tyre pressure different for electric vehicles?

While the recommended tyre pressure for electric cars (EVs) may be comparable to that of regular vehicles, it is always advisable to consult the manufacturer's recommendations for your individual EV model. The weight distribution and performance characteristics of EVs may change, influencing tyre pressure recommendations.

12. What happens if I drive with incorrect tyre pressure?

Driving with wrong tyre pressure can cause a variety of problems, including decreased fuel economy, uneven tyre wear, poor traction and handling, and an increased chance of tyre failure. To provide the best safety and performance, tyre pressure should be checked and maintained on a regular basis.

13. What causes pressure loss in Tyres?

Pressure loss in tyres can be caused by a variety of factors, such as punctures, leaks from broken valve stems or seals, slow air loss over time and changes in temperature that alter air volume.


By incorporating these simple yet crucial steps into your routine, you can ensure your tyres remain properly inflated, maximizing their lifespan and contributing to a safer, more fuel-efficient driving experience. Remember, maintaining your vehicle is an ongoing process. Should unexpected repairs arise, consider securing a extended warranty from a reputable provider like Warranty Direct. Recognized for offering comprehensive coverage for most parts in the UK, Warranty Direct provides peace of mind knowing you are protected against unforeseen mechanical or electrical failures.

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