Tips For Driving In Spring
As seasons change, driving conditions change. As a driver, you need to be prepared for the different driving challenges that come with each passing month. When spring comes around, there a few things to look out for.
First, be sure to check your air pressure monthly and before any long trips. Maintaining the proper air pressure helps to ensure that your tires can perform the way they were designed to perform. For the best possible performance, we suggest you inflate your tires to the manufacturer recommended air pressure, which can be found on the driver’s door panel, on the glove box door, or in the owner’s manual. Maintaining the proper air pressure helps you combat some of the most common challenges in spring driving, including rain and potholes.
Spring weather often has sporadic downpours, which can make driving quite difficult. If there is a sudden downpour, your vehicle could possibly hydroplane. When rainwater mixes with oil or grime on the streets, the roads can become very slick. It is best that you adjust your speed and pay very close attention to the road surface, watching for standing water that might cause hydroplaning.
When it comes to wet weather driving, your tread depth plays a big role. We recommend checking your tread depth when you check your air pressure, or once a month, and before any long trips. Wet weather traction can be seriously diminished as early as 5/32nds of tread depth. With the sporadic rain and possible damaged road conditions, it is important that your tires have enough tread depth to evacuate water from the contact patch and properly grip the road.
If you live in a region that deals with harsh winter conditions, you should keep an eye out for serious potholes after the ice thaws. During the winter months, moisture can seep into the road surface, and repeated freezing and thawing can cause potholes, which, if hit hard enough, can seriously damage your tires and wheels. The faster you are driving, the more serious the damage could be. If you cannot avoid hitting a pothole, reduce your speed before hitting it, but release the brake before actually striking the pothole. It is worth noting that properly inflated tires are less susceptible to damage from potholes than underinflated tires.
If you do hit a pothole, we recommend having your tires and wheels inspected afterward for any damage. Potholes can bend and or crack wheels and cause irreparable damage to tires. This damage may not be noticeable to you immediately, but can cause wheel/tire failure in the future. If you catch the damage early, it can prevent more serious damage from occurring down the road.