Going the Distance: Correctly inflated tires important for EV mileage, says TRAC survey

Toronto, Ontario — A recent survey from the Tire and Rubber Association (TRAC) reveals that while a majority of drivers polled understand the relationship between correctly inflated tires and improved fuel mileage, less understand the importance for electric vehicle (EV) mileage.

The purpose of TRAC’s survey was to “gauge attitudes and knowledge around the impacts of proper tire inflation on both internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles and EVs.”

The survey specifically found that while 77 percent “of motorists know that correctly inflated tires improve fuel economy, only 62 percent understand how proper tire inflation can optimize EV range.”

For ICE vehicles specifically, according to the survey, “industry studies show motorists can improve their gas mileage by 0.6 percent on average—up to 3 percent in some cases—simply by keeping their tires inflated to the vehicle manufacturer’s recommended pressure. Additionally, underinflated tires can lower gas mileage by about 0.2 percent for each one PSI drop in the average pressure of all tires.”

The survey also noted that 81 percent of respondents believe today’s financial pressures related to high living costs has made proper tire inflation and maintenance more important than ever; while 95 percent believe that proper tire inflation is essential to vehicle safety.

“However, despite high awareness of the importance of proper tire inflation,” TRAC’s survey said, “the survey found major—and potentially dangerous—gaps in knowledge about how to measure and set the correct tire inflation level, particularly among young drivers, who are most likely to purchase an EV.”

Notably, only 24 percent of drivers check their tire inflation pressure monthly as recommended by tire makers and this number drops to only 18 percent among drivers aged 18 to 34.

62 percent of respondents are unaware inflation pressure should only be measured when tires are cold, and 32 percent improperly referred to the air pressure stamped on the tire’s sidewall when identifying the correct pressure for their tires when this is instead the maximum pressure a tire can contain under maximum load. 12 percent of respondents also claimed to not know how to determine if their tires are properly inflated without relying on visual indicators.

For more information on how to maximize the safety, performance, and longevity of your tires, click here.

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