A hot summer could be damaging for car tires

PHOENIX (FOX 10) -- Tuesday saw some of the hottest temperatures the Valley has experienced so far in 2019, with temperatures climbing to dangerous levels.

With the hot weather, what a lot of people don't think about is how damaging the heat can be for car tires. Most people judge the condition of their tires by looking at the tread, but experts said people should also be keeping a close eye on the air pressure.

"Check your air pressure, check your air pressure," said Kim Sigman with Community Tire Pros.

During the hot summer months, local tire shops are busier than ever. Experts say many car owners need to keep up with proper maintenance on their tires.

"You start to see more shreds of tires out in the roadway," said Michelle Donati-Grayman with AAA Arizona.

Tires blowing out or shredding can be dangerous.

"Summer is AAA's busiest time of year for roadside assistance," said Donati-Grayman. "We see vehicles are just put to the test by the heat."

"The average tire loses about one pound of air a month," said Sigman.

In this heat, even brand new tires can become under-inflated in just a few months, and being even slightly under-inflated isn't so bad during normal temps, but that's a different story in 100-plus degree weather.

"If you're doing 60 miles an hour, every minute that tire is going around 800 times it's under-inflated, guess what? It's gonna go," said Sigman.

To keep the tires fuller for longer, drivers can fill up their tires with nitrogen instead of oxygen.

"Nitrogen is a bigger molecule, so the air doesn't dissipate as fast," said Sigman.

In the heat, experts said drivers should be checking the air pressure of their car's tires every three months, especially before they go on a long road trip.