We’ve found that tire under-inflation is more complex than conventionally thought
REAL WORLD FACTORS CONTRIBUTING TO UNDER-INFLATED TIRES
Tire under-inflation is typically understood to be caused by gradual leakage, with regular maintenance checks to re-fill tires. Real world data shows that the story is much more interesting, making the maintenance of tire pressure a huge challenge for fleets. Below are some major contributors to tire pressure changes that are sometimes left unaccounted for.
Air molecules are small enough to escape through the rubber of a tire via diffusion, decreasing tire pressure.
Tire pressures can drop up to 15 psi in less than one week during an extreme winter cold spell.
Exposure to direct sunlight causes tire pressure to increase and is difficult to account for during maintenance.
DRIVING BETWEEN CLIMATES
Temperatures can vary widely as trucks drive back and forth between regions with hot and cold climates.
Tires coming in for maintenance while still hot from driving on the road require 3 hours to cool.
Temperature differences between the inside and outside of maintenance shops in the winter cause swings in tire pressure
LEAKY VALVE STEMS
Valve stems can corrode or collect debris blocking the valve open and causing tires to slowly lose pressure.
Measurement equipment needs regular calibration and can lose accuracy with rough handling.
Improperly inflated tires are sometimes missed or improperly adjusted during maintenance.
Optimal pressure doesn’t just increase mileage; it extends the life of the tires for your entire fleet.