Summer is here! With this season, comes fun in the sun, family vacations, and cookouts every weekend. Unfortunately, summer heat can also bring tire problems like blowouts. Tire blowouts are not only dangerous for you, but also for the vehicles around you. Luckily, there are several precautions you can take as a vehicle owner to help prevent your family from being stranded on the side of the highway with a tire blowout.

Maintain your tires’ air pressure. Your risk of a blowout is substantially higher if you’re cruising around with over or underinflated tires. This is an easy issue to prevent and just requires a little TLC. You’ll want to figure out what your tires’ optimal air pressure is, and get a tire gauge so you can check it regularly (every week or so, ideally). When you notice your tire pressure is getting a bit lower or higher than recommended, adjust as necessary. Voila! 

Rotate your tires. Uneven tire wear is a common culprit for tire blowouts any time of the year. So, how do keep your tires from wearing unevenly? It’s simple! Regular tire rotations will help you achieve uniform tire wear all year long. A good rule of thumb is to rotate your tires every 6,000 – 8,000 miles, but you should always check your vehicle’s owner’s manual for specific rotation recommendations. 

Replace worn out tires. Even the best cared for tires won’t last forever. As your tires begin to lose tread, their ability to grip the road will be compromised. Luckily, there’s an easy way to check your tread using a penny! Simply place a penny head first into a tread groove and pay close attention to how much of Lincoln’s head is covered by the tread. If you can see all of Lincoln’s head, it’s time to visit your local tire shop for a new set. 

Unfortunately, a blowout can’t always be prevented. Knowing how to drive through a tire blowout can help you keep your cool if it ever happens to you. Remember to keep a firm grip on the steering wheel, avoid slamming the brakes, and instead let your car slow down gradually. Once you have slowed to a safe speed, pull your vehicle to the side of the highway and turn on your hazard lights. These tips and tricks will help lessen your chance of a blowout happening, and better prepare you for the unexpected!