Did you know that your tires can lose their ability to grip a wet road even if half of their tread is still in place?
According to tests conducted by Consumer Reports, even tires that are only half-worn can hydroplane on wet roads. Hydroplaning occurs when tires cannot effectively channel water through their grooves. The tires actually ride on top of the water, losing contact with the road and rendering the steering wheel temporarily useless.
Speed is a factor too. The faster you’re driving, the more likely you are to hydroplane. In fact, you can lose control of your vehicle on a wet road at speeds as low as 40 miles per hour.
Stopping distances are also increased when your tires are worn and the pavement is wet.
Here are a few wet-weather driving tips to keep in mind:
- Slow down. If you start to skid, pull your foot off the gas pedal.
- Leave extra room between your vehicle and the car in front of you. On wet pavement, you should be at least 4 to 6 seconds behind the next vehicle.
- If the rain is really coming down, delay driving until the storm subsides.
As always, check your tires once a month for any damage, sufficient tread depth, and proper pressure. If you need help with any of these monthly tasks, just pull into the Mountain View Tire location nearest you.