Safe Adventures need Safe Tyres!
Thursday, 25 February 2016 1:56:00 PM Australia/Sydney
“I love a sunburnt country, a land of sweeping plains, of ragged mountain ranges, of droughts and flooding rains”. This quote from the iconic Australian poem ‘My Country” by Dorothea Mackellar creates a vision of a place to explore.
Modern exploration of Australia is as easy as jumping in your car with a smartphone, a credit card and hitting the road without any set agenda. But a great Australian adventure comes with great responsibility given you can drive long distances without coming across a town and through all types of weather conditions.
The Victorian Automobile Chamber of Commerce recently revealed that more than 30 percent of cars fail roadworthy tests because of worn tyres. The reduced friction of a worn tyre on a wet-road can increase a vehicle’s stopping distance from 60km/h by as much as 53 metres, according to the VACC.
Even with good tyres and brakes, a wet road increases stopping distance by the equivalent of a 5 km/h higher road speed, and the difference is even greater with poor tyres or brakes, the VACC report found.
Importance of Tread Depth
Tyres play an important role with the steering, braking, traction of the vehicle on wet roads hence, it is necessary to have your tyres’ tread depth checked before you hit the slippery roads. Tread depth is basically a vertical measurement between the top of the tread rubber to the bottom of the tyre’s deepest grooves. It provides grip, reduces the chances of puncture, provides better traction and prevents hydroplaning of cars on wet roads.
Tread depth is important because it greatly affects aquaplaning, where tyres are unable to maintain contact with the road surface due to water on the road. Old tyres with poor tread depth are unable to provide proper grip on wet roads, which results in skidding of the vehicle. It also affects the braking distance of your vehicle.
Even tyres with good tread depth are not as effective in the first rain after a drought. This is due to oils and other contaminants on the road being released in the rain. People on roads in dry regions of Australia need to be careful and exercise extended braking distances in order to avoid accidents if it hasn’t rained for a while.
Do It Yourself – Measure Tread Depth at Home
In Australia, tyres are required to have a minimum tread depth of 1.5mm at any point where the tyre has contact with the road to be considered roadworthy. However, good practice is to replace them before they get to this point. All tyres have tread wear indicators but one of the easiest ways to check your tyre tread depth is with a 10c piece.
Simply take a 10c piece and insert it into the tread grooves of your tyres. If the outside edge of the coin is obscured, then you’ve got enough tread left and your tyre can be considered to be ok. If, however, the outer band is visible then your tyres are probably unroadworthy and you should have your tyres checked by a Licensed Vehicle Tester ASAP!
At Car Tyres and You, our three convenient locations are all licensed vehicle testing stations authorised by VicRoads to perform roadworthy inspections and issue Roadworthy Certificates. You can take advantage of our licensed vehicle testers checking your tyres for free to ensure they remain in a roadworthy condition. Car Tyres and You give your local service and knowledge and tyres at online prices!