The government always seems to be taking our money, but sometimes they do get things right and pass legislation that beneficial. US government legislation that has been in the works since the 2000 tire recall will require auto manufacturers to install tire pressure monitoring sensors on all new models for vehicle’s under 10,000 pounds. The bill, which affects vehicles for the 2008 model year, is being phased in September 1st of this year. The system is such that when the pressure of any of the four tire drops below 25% below the recommended pressure, a warning light will display on the dashboard. The consumer will still need to stop and fill up the tire though, tires are not yet self inflating(although that it is probably coming).
Tires are the most abused part of the car. We all know that we should check our vehicle’s tire pressure every 30 days, but most of don’t monitor it very closely. I probably check it once every couple months, and before long trips. This upgrade will only reportedly cost “manufacturers between $48.44 and $69.89 per vehicle”, a small price for the numerous benefits that come with properly inflated tires. I am all for technology helping us stay safer and live less expensive lives. The savings of properly inflated tires are this :
- NHTSA estimates that 120 lives a year will be saved.
- Better fuel economy/gas mileage
- Decreased stopping distances
- Decreased likelihood of tire failure. Majority of flat tires would be avoided with properly inflated tires.
- Less skidding on wet surfaces.
Now for those of us with older cars, we should go out and get a huge interest only loan for a new car to take advantage of the new technology. Just kidding, my goal is to set a monthly calender date to start checking my tires. The motivation is coming from the increased gas savings and improved safety that my family will receive. If I make it habit, I should never have to worry about it again. To start, I just added it into my PDA as a recurring monthly event.
How often do you check your tires? Do you like the new law?