Tyres can lose around 3–6% of their air per month (that's 1-2 psi in tyre talk). So it's important to check them at least once a month and before long journeys.
Benefits of the right tyre pressure
- You can save up to 10% on fuel if you drive smoothly and have the right tyre pressure. If the average household spends $3,500 a year on fuel, $350 back in the pocket is pretty good.
- Over inflating tyres can affect how your vehicle handles, making the ride harsher and sometimes leading to loss of control.
- Under inflating can lead to overheating, uneven tread wear and also potential loss of control.
Now that you know the 'why', we can help with the 'how'.
What should your tyre pressure be?
We've got a tool for that! Just enter your plate number at the link below to find out.
If your tyre size isn't included in the results, then that tyre might not be suitable for your vehicle. Your best bet is to check with your vehicle's manufacturer or a local tyre dealer.
PSI (pounds per square inch), bars and kPa (kilopascals) are all ways of measuring units of pressure. It doesn’t matter which unit you follow, as long as you're consistent across all tyres, and with the tyre pressure gauge you’re using.
This tool shows tyre pressure data for light vehicles (weighing less than 3.5 tonnes), manufactured from about 2000.
You can also usually find the correct tyre pressure for your vehicle on a plate on the driver side door, inside the fuel filler flap, or in your vehicle handbook.
How to check tyre pressure
There are a couple of steps involved but it's basically easy as:
- Unscrew the valve cap from a tyre and put it somewhere safe – like your glovebox.
- If you're using a pump with an in-built tyre gauge (like the ones at Z stations), enter the correct pressure into the air pump and then press the gauge into the valve until the air pump beeps.
- If you use a manual foot pump, or a pump that doesn't let you pre-select the target pressure, check the pressure first with a pocket gauge. Press the gauge onto the valve (you might hear a slight hiss as you press down and again as you release it). You only need to do this for a second or two to get an accurate reading. If the pressure needs adjusting, inflate or deflate your tyres accordingly. You can deflate your tyres by turning the tyre gauge's head around and pressing it on the valve.
- Screw the valve cap back on the tyre and repeat with the rest. Remember to check your spare tyre too.
Pump it up if you've got a trailer
If you're carrying a trailer or heavy load, it's a good idea to increase your vehicle's tyre pressure in line with the manufacturer’s recommendations. If your vehicle handbook doesn't have this information, a rule of thumb is to add 4 psi (28 kPa or 0.28 bar) to the recommended pressure.
We want to get things right
We've put the tyre pressure tool together with our partner EECA (Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority) and have made every effort to be accurate. That said, data accuracy can't be guaranteed and you should check your vehicle handbook, or talk to your local garage or tyre specialist if you have any doubts about the information this tool gives you.
All Z stations have contact details for a local mechanic who you can chat with. Just ask at the counter and we'll be happy to connect you.