Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: What do the various terms associated with tire pressure and tire loading mean?

asked by on

What do the various terms associated with tire pressure and tire loading mean?

A: There are quite a few different terms you’l...

There are quite a few different terms you’ll need to be familiar with when it comes to your car’s tires. Understanding these terms and how they apply to your tires will help you take better care of them, and can result in safer driving. Here’s a quick introduction to some of the most important:

  1. Tread Wear Indicators: Small rubber bars embedded in the tread of your tires. You may hear them called “wear bars”. When these show, it’s time to replace your tires.

  2. Load Rating: This is the maximum weight your tire can hold when set at a specific pressure.

  3. Cold Tire Pressure: The amount of air inside the tire when the tire is cold (before you get on the road, or after the car has sat long enough for the tires to cool down).

  • Maximum Load Rating: The weight a tire can carry at the maximum rated PSI.

  • Recommended Inflation Pressure: The amount of air the tire manufacturer recommends when the tire is cold.

Tip

When it comes to tire pressure, ignore the information on the sidewall and go by what’s listed on the driver side door placard.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: What does the Antilock Brake (ABS) indicator mean on the dash?

Your car is equipped with an antilock brake system (ABS) that works with your regular brakes to provide better control in certain driving situations. You’ll notice that the ABS light on the dash of your car comes on from time...

Q: How do you operate the moon roof?

If your SUV has a moon roof, it provides you with another means to vent the interior, to let in fresh air, and to let in more light. It’s also designed to be simple to use, but there are a...

Q: Its like my front wheels locked and wont go forward it will reverse but hear a grinding1994 Honda Accord LX

Hi there - you have listed some of the possible causes. Check transmission fluid first - easiest, and least expensive to fix. Low fluid would definitely cause lack of motion issues. The grinding noise you mention is not a good...

Related articles

How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.