The heat is on – and that’s bad news for truck tires.
When your trucks are out on the road, they are exposed to a variety of factors that can negatively impact tire life and performance – and put your fleet at greater risk for accidents. One of the biggest threats to your tires is extreme heat.
There are a variety of factors that can cause heat to build up around the tires, including increased air and road surface temperatures, improperly inflated tires, and overloading and unsafe driving habits such as excessive speed and hard braking.
Heat buildup can lead to uneven wear, shorter product lifespan and possible tire failure. Unfortunately, any heat damage to your tires is irreversible, so it’s absolutely critical to do all you can to limit exposure to extreme heat.
While you may not be able to control every factor contributing to heat buildup, here are four things you and your drivers can do to keep an eye on your tires and keep your fleet safer.
- Check your tires before hitting the road. Be on the lookout for cracks, bulges, punctures and foreign objects in the tire, and watch for irregular tread wear patterns.
- Keep an eye on your PSI. In addition to excess heat, running on underinflated tires causes structural stress, shortens the life of the tire and reduces fuel efficiency.
- Don’t forget your wheels! Check for loose lug nuts or cracks in the wheel itself, and make sure the tire and rim components match in width and diameter.
- Check ‘em while they’re hot. After you complete a trip, check out your tires while they’re still hot. This is the best time to look for bulges, ballooning and signs of belt failure.