Tire blowouts are a common summer phenomenon, so much so Popular Mechanics has dubbed summer "tire blowout season." This "season" runs from the middle of May until the end of October. As the heat climbs on Ohio highways and the temperature reaches into the 90's on some days, the pavement can get as hot as 150 degrees. This can exacerbate existing problems with tires and can cause new problems to develop. An experienced car accident lawyer knows when a tire has an issue and a blowout occurs, there is a significant risk of the driver losing control of the vehicle and causing a serious highway collision to occur.
How to Avoid Tire Blowouts
Avoiding tire blowouts is one of the keys to avoiding summer collisions and staying safe on the road. Popular Mechanics suggests one of the most important ways to avoid a blowout is to make sure your air pressure in your tires is high enough.
When the tire pressure gets too low, this causes the tires to flex. The components inside of the tires like the metal, rubber, and fabric and other materials can stretch beyond the point they should. A blowout is the likely result.
Since 2007, vehicles have had tire pressure monitoring systems in place to issue a warning to drivers when the air pressure gets too low. Most drivers rely on these warning systems and assume this is sufficient to avoid problems under-inflated tires can cause. The reality, however, is these systems usually are not going to let you know your tire pressure is low until it has dropped to dangerous levels. If your pressure is below normal but is not dangerously low, you could end up driving around on bad tires for a long time. This will cause the internal components to wear and could increase the chances of a subsequent blowout.
To make sure this does not happen to you, you should manually check your tire pressure periodically or get a professional to do it for you. If you find out you have been driving for a while on tires with pressure too low, get someone to check out the tires for you to make sure the internal parts are OK and have not suffered dangerous. This is especially important when your worn tires are exposed to the hot summer pavement.
Another big reason summer is blowout season is because people tend to overload their cars in the summer. You may be going on road trips with friends or doing home improvement projects and could fill the back of your truck, van, or SUV with people or equipment. If you put too much weight in the car and your gross vehicle weight rating is exceeded, this is going to put a lot of pressure on the tires. This, too, can increase the chances a blowout will happen. Be sure not to overload the vehicle.
Finally, you should avoid potholes and road obstacles whenever possible and should go slowly over potholes because hitting them hard can affect tire integrity over the long-term or can cause an immediate blowout.
By following these tips, hopefully you can reduce the risk of blowouts and stay safe all summer long.