ARE YOUR TYRES TOWING SAFE?

It is important to check the condition of the tyres on your towed vehicle

Bridgestone is urging Australian motorists to check their trailer tyres before returning to the roads.
According to Group Technical Field Services Manager for Bridgestone Australia and New Zealand, Garth Middleton, trailer, caravan and boat trailer tyres are at a greater risk of failure because of their infrequent use and less care taken to maintaining their optimal operating conditions when they are sitting dormant.
“Some Caravan, boat and trailer owners neglect checking the conditions of their towed vehicle’s tyres, which poses a huge risk on highways,” Garth said.
“Tyre pressure, tyre age and the general wellbeing of your trailer tyres should all be checked before use – especially ahead of longer trips where there is a greater heat build-up and an elevated risk of failure.”
For trailer tyres, the greatest risk is posed by ageing tyres where the rubber has started to oxidise and break down from exposure to heat and moisture over the years. Older tyres are more likely to have hairline cracks in the rubber which could cause a tyre failure at speed on the highway.
Before towing, motorists should check on the condition of all tyres on the vehicle and trailer, inspecting the sidewalls for any cracks or imperfections, ensuring there is still more than 1.5mm of tread left in all the principle grooves and that the tyres are inflated to the correct pressure.
It is also recommended that motorists confirm the age of their tyres, which is identifiable using the serial number on the sidewall located by the term ‘DOT’.
The last four numbers of the serial number indicate the tyre age where the first two of these numbers indicate the week of production and the final two numbers indicate the year. For example, ‘1216’ would indicate the tyre was produced in the 12th week of 2016.
Bridgestone recommends that tyres between five and 10 years old are inspected by a tyre professional regardless of their condition, and those aged 10 years or more are replaced.
“There is an undeniable link between tyres and safety, and it’s alarming how complacent some motorists can be about checking their tyres,” Garth said.
“This is even more important when towing because of the additional loads and forces associated with trailers. A simple tyre check could make a huge difference.”
If you’re unsure about the condition of your tyres, Bridgestone says you can visit your local Bridgestone Select or Bridgestone Service Centre for assistance.

To find your nearest store, head to www.bridgestonetyres.com.au