Close-up of flat car tire on wet pavement.

More Than an Inconvenience

For many, a flat tire is just a simple annoyance; you come back to your vehicle in the morning and find that the cold has made the rubber shrink and the air has escaped, or someone vandalized your tires while you were away and they’re unusable. These things are annoying, unfair, rage-inducing, but no more than that. 

A blowout, on the other hand, can be life-threatening. You might be cruising on the freeway at 80 mph when the tire explodes, or you might be driving on an icy road — the last thing you need is your car threatening to spin because a tire has popped unexpectedly.

In these situations, things move so fast that it’s hard to even begin to think about what you need to do. Suddenly, you and your passenger — not to mention everyone on the road around you — is in danger of a collision. This is where muscle memory and instinct kick in. It’s best that you learn now, as you read this in safety, what to do in the event of a tire blowout.

Making Correct Choices

The proper response to this emergency, as with any other, is to remain calm and don’t act rashly. Wildly turning the steering wheel or slamming on the brakes will only increase the amount of danger you are in, if only because you can’t be sure how exactly the car will handle that type of control in its broken state.

No, the best thing to do is to calmly remember that knee-jerk reactions will have wide consequences on the road, especially if the car is already controlling poorly.

  • If you feel your car drifting or turning fishtail, don’t turn the wheel hard to overcorrect.
  • Accelerate gently out of the drift and try to keep your nose pointing straight down the road.
  • Keep a firm hold of the steering wheel at the familiar 10 and 2 positions.

In instances like this, the brake pedal can actually be a liability. Only after the car is pointing in the right direction and feels steady do you want to begin the process of gently slowing to a halt. Otherwise, you may end up damaging the brakes right along with your tires, which would only make your car repairs all the more headache-inducing.

Picking the Right Tires

While many of these blowouts can occur because some foreign object strikes the tire on the road, like a sharp rock or a loose nail, a lot of them are due to poorly maintained tires that are past their prime. It is crucial, therefore, that you make a note to check your tires regularly to ensure that they are still roadworthy.

If you fear that your tires may be reaching the point where they are no longer safe — either the walls of the tire have become thin or the tread has worn all the way down — then it’s time you replaced them before the new year gets truly underway. There are numerous types of tires that would work best for our Utah roads and would keep you from suffering any unplanned trips to Master Muffler’s West Jordan car repair center. Here are a few to keep in mind:

  • All-season tires: Perfect for people who mostly drive on paved roads and only want the most basic, albeit competent, option.
  • Performance tires: These are made for cars that typically drive at higher speeds and have a greater need for traction.
  • Truck tires: These are the best for roads of inconsistent quality, from poorly paved streets to driving completely off-road. They also are the best for long, unbroken stints of driving.
  • Winter/summer tires: Some tires are made especially for certain seasons, designed for the quality of the roads and the type of obstructions that those seasons are known for; things like extreme temperatures or icy conditions.

Whatever tire you are interested in, our car repair specialists will make sure that it is properly installed and that your car’s torque and balance are well-suited for driving. Bring your car into our West Jordan shop today.

Categories: Automotive Info

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