Q:

How do you calculate the correct air pressure for the tires on your car?

A:

Quick Answer

The correct tire pressure for a vehicle is listed in the owner's manual or on a sticker located in the driver door edge, glove box, fuel door or trunk lid. Tire pressure information is also available on a tire load and inflation table, which can be found at most tire stores.

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How do you calculate the correct air pressure for the tires on your car?
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Full Answer

A vehicle's owner's manual and sticker contains information on the standard tire size recommended for the vehicle, as well as the maximum load amount. If a vehicle has a specialty or plus-sized tire, look up the specific tire number on a table to see the optimal pressure and maximum load. Generally, tires that are larger than the standard size have higher pressure needs.

Although maximum air pressure is listed on a tire's sidewall, that is not the recommended air pressure for the tire. Inflating a tire to the maximum can cause premature wear on the tire and inefficient braking. On the other hand, underinflation can also cause a tire to wear and the car to handle poorly. To match air pressure recommendations most closely, inflate tires when they are cold. A tire that has been driven for more than 1 mile has higher pressure than one that has not.

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