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For many Americans the summer season is driving season. A few simple tips can keep you on the road and not having tire problems. Everyone wants an enjoyable road trip.

There are simple things you can do that can help avoid a flat tire.

Check the Tire Pressure. Make sure your tire pressure is correct and at the vehicle manufacturer level recommended. Check it at least once per month and before every long trip including the spare tire. The correct cold inflation pressure for your tires is listed on the vehicle placard on the door post, fuel door glove box or in the owners manual. Cold inflation pressure refers to the pressure in a tire that has not been driven for at least three hours.

As tires warm during driving, it is normal for pressure to build up. Never "bleed" or reduce air pressure when tires are hot. The tire pressure listed on your sidewalls is the maximum pressure and is not intended to serve as notification of the correct pressure. Under-inflation creates excessive stresses and heat and may lead to tire failure. It is also important to guard against over-inflating, which can cause uneven war plus handling and stopping problems.

Avoid Overloading Your Vehicle. Before you fill the trunk and roof rack with your stuff, check out the vehicle manufactures recommendations for loading your vehicle. The vehicle manufacturers loading recommendation can be found on the vehicle information placard on the door post or in the vehicle owners manual. Over-loading your vehicle creates excessive heat in your tires. Excessive heat can cause tire failure that could result in vehicle damage and/or serious injury or even death.

Check The Tires Alignment and Balance. If you're going to be driving long distances with a loaded vehicle or you haven't had your car checked in a a while, have the alignment and rotatin of tieres checkes. Tires and wheels that are out of balance or misaligned can cause unevern wear or vehicle problems. Have your car check dby an automootife service professional before you leave.

Check The Tread On Your Tires. It is a good idea to check the tread grooves of your tires to make sure that they're free or foreign objects. This makes it easier for your tires to grip the road and increases your ability to safely maneuver your car.

Check The Sidewalls of Your Tires. Make sure there are no gouges, cuts, bulges or other irregularities. You may have irregular tread wear if there are high and low areas or unusually smooth areas.

Watch for Built-in Treadwear Indications. "Wear bars" which look like narrow strips of smooth rubber across the tread will appear on the tire when the tread is worn down to one-sixteenth of an inch. When you see these "wear bars," the tire is worn out and should be replaced.

A Quick Fix If You Have A Flat. Regardless of all the precautionary measures you take to avoid a tire breakdown, flat tires do happen. Always remember to carry a can of Fix-A-Flat® in your car for a quick and simple tire seal. Just attach the hose on the container to the valve on your tire and press the inflation button on top of the can. Fix-A-Flat® will seal the puncture and fill the tire with enough air to get you back on the road in minutes. Visit a gas station to fill your tire up with the proper amount of air pressure and visit a qualified tire professional at the earliest opportunity for a permanent repair.

If You Have To Change A Tire. When changing a flat, it's important to be well out of the way of passing traffic, especially on busy or high-speed roads. If possible, pull the car onto the shoulder of the road on a stretch of road that is long and straight, rather than on a curve. Passing traffic will be able to avoid you better if they can see you as they approach. Be sure to have the vehicle positioned well out of the travel lanes. Also be sure to choose a spot that is level, rather than on an incline, to ensure safety when jacking up the car.

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