Your tires' contact patch ensures your vehicle's traction on the road. The contact patch and traction level depend on, among other things, the tires' pressure.
Because the tires constitute your vehicle's only point of contact with the roadway, it is essential that you give them particular attention to ensure proper traction.
Traction on the road depends on tire quality, wear and air pressure.
The portion of the tread that actually makes contact with the road surface is roughly the size of the palm of your hand. This is all that keeps a ton-and-a-half vehicle on the road.
This is why you should check your tire pressure every month to make sure it complies with the manufacturer's recommendations.
The recommended air pressure for each tire is indicated in the vehicle owner’s manual or on the sticker that is usually located on the side of the driver’s door. Remember to check the pressure in the spare tire as well.
Tires that are inflated with nitrogen are less sensitive to changes in temperature, but they can still spring a leak or go flat.
Some vehicles are equipped with a tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS). The device's warning light is located on the dashboard and switches on when a tire is underinflated.
For more about the condition of your tires, see the “Tires” section on the Regular Maintenance page.
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Last update: January 6, 2021