Drivers complacent over spare tyres

Drivers complacent over spare tyres

More than 50 per cent of drivers have no idea whether their car is equipped with a spare wheel, according to a recent survey.

The online poll, conducted by Halfords Autocentres, also showed that 65 per cent of motorists felt unable to change a wheel themselves.
Worryingly, nearly three-quarters of respondents admitted to being clueless as to the correct tyre pressures for their vehicle - an oversight that could potentially cost lives, with braking and cornering severely affected by even minor differences to the recommended pressure.

Car manufacturers are increasingly replacing spare tyres for repair and sealant kits, in a bid to save weight and maximise boot space. However, such kits are often only suitable for relatively minor punctures.

Rory Carlin, of Halfords Autocentres, said: "Tyre sealant kits are neither a permanent fix nor a solution to all types of puncture. They are for emergency use only - to help get you home or to the nearest garage safely - and no substitute for routinely checking the condition of your tyres."

Routine checking is something that only eight per cent of motorists do on a weekly basis. This combined with the deteriorating state of Britain's roads means a motorist suffers a puncture on average once every five years.

Punctures are not the only inconvenience of poor tyre maintenance. Increasingly, motorists are failing MOT tests for neglecting the condition of their spare wheel.

Emergency breakdown services have also reported a 20 per cent increase in tyre related call outs, simply due to driver ignorance over whether they have a spare tyre or their inability to change it or use a sealant based alternative.
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