Michelin issues post-lockdown tyre safety warning
23 March 2021
Author: Sean Keywood
Essential safety checks must be carried out on tyres fitted to vehicles which may have seen very little use over the past 12 months, according to Michelin.
The tyre manufacturer says that as the UK gradually emerges from lockdown restrictions, drivers should be aware that the effects of a car being parked in one place for a long time can affect handling, performance, and safety.
In addition, it says longer-term changes to annual mileage due to post-lockdown commuting patterns would underline the need for regular tyre checks.
Michelin says prolonged storage can create flat patches on a tyre, or worsen existing damage.
It says before driving a vehicle that has not been used for a while, drivers should set tyre pressures to the manufacturer's recommendations, and visually check tyres for bulges, cuts, excessive cracking, or other damage.
Drivers should also move the vehicle a short distance to expose the part of the tyres that has been on the ground, before carrying out visual checks, and check tyre depth.
In addition, tyres that have been fitted for at least five years should be checked annually, and ten-year-old tyres should be replaced regardless of wear.
Michelin UK technical manager for car, van and 4x4 Brian Porteous said: "Flexible working and homeworking are likely to become more common, while many meetings will continue to take place digitally. This means mileage will drop and tyres will last longer and be more open to age and the long-term effects of minor damage.
"There will also be longer periods between servicing, so more than ever drivers have to take responsibility for inspecting their tyres regularly - for the sake of their safety and their wallets."