Tires & Fuel Economy
How to Increase Your Fuel Economy With Tires
Anything that increases a tire’s rolling resistance or friction with the road surface will increase the amount of work required of the engine and therefore the amount of fuel it burns.
Under-inflation increases a tire’s rolling resistance. Don’t wait until your tires “look” low, or the TPMS (tire pressure monitoring system) warns you that your Honda’s tire pressures are low before you check them. Tires that are 56 kPa (8 PSI) low can increase fuel consumption by 4%. Think of the air to keep your tires at proper pressure as “free” gasoline.
Wheel misalignment increases the resistance of the tires to roll in the direction of vehicle movement, which requires extra engine power to overcome and more fuel to be consumed. The increased “drag” caused could increase fuel consumption by up to 25%.
Tire Tread Depth
Automobile and light truck tires manufactured for sale in North America have wear indicators (“wear bars”) moulded into the tire tread at 2/32″ depth. This is the minimum legal tread depth permitted for use on public roads. When a tire’s tread is worn level with the wear indicators in two or more adjacent tread grooves, the tire is considered illegal for further use and must be replaced.
Some all-season tires have a second wear indicator at 4/32″ tread depth. When worn to this depth, an all-season tire may no longer be suitable for use in snow and may experience hydroplaning in severe wet conditions.
Winter tires may have a second wear indicator at 6/32″ that indicates when the tire may no longer be suitable for use in snow.