Q:

What should you do if a tire pops while you're driving?

A:

Quick Answer

During a tire blow-out, the driver should keep the gas pedal pressed, steer in the direction of the skid, and correct the steering to bring the car back into line. After regaining control, the driver should ease off the gas pedal to slow down, and pull off the road when the speed has been reduced.

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Full Answer

Sometimes, a bit more gas needs to be applied to overcome the initial drag that occurs during a blow-out to maintain control the wheels. All inputs to the car should be gentle to avoid a spin out, and if braking is needed to slow the car down, it should be kept to a minimum. To make changing the tire easier, the car should be pulled off to the side of the road, with the damaged tire facing away from traffic. Typically, the car veers toward the side of the blown tire, making it easier to determine which side of the road is best.

To reduce the likelihood of a tire blow-out, tire pressure should be checked at least once a month. Tires eventually lose air over time, and the most common cause of tire blow-outs is under-inflation. All vehicles made after 2007 have tire-pressure monitoring systems that illuminate a warning light on the dash when the tires are under-inflated.

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