Tyres are a very basic necessity, and almost every third person is drove around by them his entire life. But few people would actually be aware of some of the facts that surround this seemingly simple and innocent instrument we all use.
Here are some interesting things you probably would not have known about the regular radials that drive you around:
1) Tyres can age:
People grant plentiful amounts of attention to the pressure and tread of their radials. But what a few of them understand, is that tyres go through a painful and deteriorating aging process.
The fact is that dust particles, accumulated over time, can lead to corrosive effects on the rubber that makes these components. In addition to this, harmful elements such as sunlight and ozone together cause to their degradation. Overtime, this would lead to tyre failure, while losing its tread value. Therefore, radials, like people, are also prone to the limitations of old age and wear.
2) The development of tyres owes its part to motor racing:
Formula One is the most impressive sport in the world. But besides being a source of entertainment, it contributes to the world of motor vehicles in another, more serious manner. The developments in regular tyres borrow impacts made in the field of Formula One race cars. Cutting edge technology, in-depth research and the most advanced study goes into the power-house industry that is Formula One. As a result, new developments and advancements are bound to hit the field once in a while. And these also leave imprints in the world of regular motor vehicles. Therefore, the tyres that we use now, have carried deep influences from Formula One racing, accumulated over a large span of time.
Therefore, one of the major reasons, we have advancements in the field of normal cars and tyres, is the sharpshooting sports machines that we know as Formula One.
3) One of the most vital things is valve maintenance:
The manufacturers of quite a few high-end tyre products have made this discovery, namely, that maintenance of valve plays a rather important part in looking after these components. Valves are responsible for maintaining pressure, and they need to be kept in check always. They need to be replaced when new radials are fitted. Valve caps protect the valves from dust, grit and water from the outside, and it is important that these seal them well.
4) Some brands give advantages:
This is a rather uncomfortable secret, but we are all well aware of it anyway. Some brands perfect their products for far better control, grip, handling and even safety. The premium tyre ranges are good at scoring all rounded success, thus enhancing both performance as well as comfort. Budget tyre brands may offer a lower price, but their quality would be inferior to that of the high-end premium brands, which give the best value for money.
5) Your tyre requirements change according to season:
Tyres are specifically designed, capitalizing on certain conditions to deliver performance, and losing out on others. The radials specifically targeted for summer road conditions would not be preferable for winter roads, and vice versa. The tread pattern and grooves, which mark all the difference for tyres, are modeled differently for different requirements. As a result, there are certain models that suit certain conditions, and others that suit other conditions. Mixing them is not a good idea, as it may compromise on the best performance a particular weather or condition could require.
6) Tyres are naturally white:
This point may score as one of the most weird facts you’ve heard your entire life, but believe it or not, tyres are, in their very root origin, white.
The fact is that rubber is made naturally white. The carbon fiber added to it is responsible for the contradicting color change.
7) Old tyres are recycled to make new ones:
Disposing of tyres is one of the worst ideas since man invented nuclear war. These components are made of the toughest non biodegradable materials. In other words, they are not easily disposed of, and, when they are, they cause a heavy toll on the environment. These release harmful toxins and greenhouse gases when they are burnt, which pollutes the environment, and human habitation as well. And, it needs to be added also, that tyres are not safe to be burnt in mass amounts, for, these fires easily swivel out of control. As a result, they are the foremost contenders for recycling, which are usually crushed, crumbled, and remade to prevent a massive wastage of resource, and a negative bearing on our environment.
8) The origin of the word ‘tyre':
This might not have hit you until coming across this, but where could this word, ‘tyre’ have come from? It is believed to have originated in the 15th century. Originally, it was a shortened form of ‘attire’, simply referring to the fact that they ‘clothed’ the wheel.
These are interesting facts that are sure to change your entire perspective on tyres. A little bit of enthusiastic insight into a topic that one encounters everyday is sure to bring fun to one’s day. And what could be a better topic than something that we practically run on everyday?
Also, don’t miss reading the technical aspect behind the tyre lettering here: How to read a tyre