Why Nitrogen is the Best for Your Tyre.
Maintaining proper tire inflation is relatively simple and essential to the overall tire performance of your vehicle. A properly inflated tire will provide longer life, quicker steering response, better fuel efficiency and a smoother ride than an improperly inflated tire. Both under-inflation and over-inflation can cause headaches like premature tire tread wear and possible tire failure. The best way to ensure you’re getting the most out of your tires is to check your tire pressure on a monthly basis.
Tire pressure is a measure of the amount of air in a vehicle’s tires, in pounds per square inch. (PSI) The required service involves checking the tires’ pressure with a pressure gauge. The recommended tire pressure is almost always lower than the maximum tire pressure. Check your owner’s manual to find out where to look on your vehicle to find the recommended measurement. This number usually is indicated either on the driver’s door pillar, the glove compartment door or sometimes on the gas filler door, the positions varies from one manufacturer to another. Once you know the manufacturer’s recommended tire pressure, then you need an accurate tire gauge to check the tire pressure. Some tire gauges, such as the popular pencil-style gauge, are notoriously inaccurate. Analog, dial-type gauges or digital gauges tend to be fairly accurate
On a slight diversion, I feel it’s good for the car lovers and enthusiasts to understand nitrogen in car tire pressure. Nitrogen is an “inert” gas, meaning it’s a property-free, non-reactive substance or, more simply I understand it as perfect “nothing.” That exactly what tires should be filled with, as in “perfect nothing” but pressure.
So if nitrogen is the perfect nothing, it can’t possibly be beneficial? Not until you compare it to the alternatives, the air. The atmosphere, the good old regular air that we have been using to inflate automotive tires for the past 150 years is already 79.1% nitrogen. But that the problem right there, with regular air and the reason it is such a poor inflation medium is that it also contains about 20% oxygen.
Everyone knows that oxygen is essential for human survival and the well being of almost every other living organism. However, it’s also quite destructive to almost everything else, think deeper when the said “oxidation.” Oxidation, also known as rust, rot and corrosion, however it is the absolute enemy of anything composed of rubber and steel, such as your tires and wheels.
Because nitrogen is an inert gas and oxygen free, it is impossible for oxidation to occur. Further, without the presence of oxygen … the “O” in “H2O” … water or condensation cannot form in a tire. Hence, no oxygen: no oxidation, no tire rot, no interior wheel or valve rust or corrosion, no water formation or water related issues.
While regular air is bad for tires, compressed air is even worse. Running air through a compressor typically adds trace amounts of oil and particulate, as well as water vapor … all combining to further rust, rot, corrode and otherwise compromise your tire and wheel assemblies. As troublesome as oxidation, moisture and the resulting damage they cause are, there is a much greater benefit to eliminating oxygen: better pressure retention.
The most detrimental property of oxygen is actually its small molecular structure. A molecule of oxygen, which again comprises about 20% of regular air, is roughly 1/4 of the size of a molecule of nitrogen. Oxygen molecules are so small that it is completely normal for air filled tires to lose 1-3 PSI each month from “permeation.” Permeation is the normal process by which the oxygen molecules in compressed air seep through a tire’s carcass. It is the reason that your, and everyone else’s, air filled tires constantly lose 1-3 PSI of air every month. Nitrogen filled tires, on the other hand, typically lose no pressure from permeation… even over many months of use. So, by inflating your tires with high purity nitrogen, they will remain at their proper operating pressure much longer