The Effects of Over Inflation in Tires
Loss of Friction
- Over-inflated tires reduce your control of a car in a turn.curve on road image by MAXFX from Fotolia.com
Friction occurs when your tires make contact with the road's surface. Your car's weight increases the amount of friction, giving it better ability to stop. Over-inflation causes the total friction between your tires and the road surface to decrease. This means that your tires no longer have as good a grip on the road, which can translate to a loss of control. When you are going through a turn, friction gives the necessary traction to control the car. Over-inflation reduces this control, making pulling out of a turn even harder.
Ability to Stop
- When you depress your brakes, three things stop your vehicle's momentum: force of friction in the brakes, force of friction between the tire and the road surface, and the power of the engine. When your tires are overinflated, you lose the necessary grip between them and the surface. This takes an important element out of the process, putting more of the work on the brakes. Your ability to stop quickly is greatly reduced.
- When a tire is properly inflated, its surface has the most contact with the road surface. If it is over-inflated, the amount of tread touching the road is reduced. If this continues for a long period of time, the tire will experience excessive wear in the center of the tread. This can cost the consumer not only control of the vehicle, but loss of tire life due to early tread wear.