02 November, 2011

Winter tyre commercials are here!!!

Prepare yourself for safer journeys in Winter with Goodyear UltraGrip 8 tyres. Get in touch to discuss your options.

14 October, 2011

MoT testing changes set to shake things up!

This week the Department for Transport announced that MoT tests must now take into account electronic stability control systems (ESC) in every car in which it is fitted. For those of you who selected the system as an optional extra, it will still be tested and should it fail, the cost to repair ESC can easily surpass £1,000.

If faulty ESC systems are left alone, the car will be judged 'unroadworthy', invalidating the driver's insurance and subjecting them to points, loss of license and sometimes confiscation of vehicle.

Additional inclusions to the MoT testing system include airbags, power steering, catalytic converters and factory-fitted tyre pressure monitoring systems.

What are your thoughts? Are the new rules too harsh or spot on?

03 October, 2011

42% of UK motorists are driving on illegal tyres...

The first step is to check them (We're happy to do this for you, just get in touch!)
Next buy some beautiful, safe, new tyres.

But what happens to your old tyres?

Furniture, perhaps? Who needs Ikea!

Verna Ventham's work showcases craft and technology working together, with the innovative use of car tyres, leather and felt. If anyone tries this, PLEASE let us know! We'd love to see how you got on.

Or how about a nice rug?

Spanish manufacturers Nanimarquina created these wonderful rugs made entirely from recycled tyres.

Summer's been and gone, perhaps you need to better insulate your shed for the winter months?

This is exactly what Millegomme, the international collective of tyre crafters, did in 2005!

Tyred of regular trainers? 

Seal in Japan, famous for transforming old tyres into fashionable, durable consumer goods, created Sneaker 101 - a pair of trainers fashioned from the disused inner-tubes of tyres. Extremely water resistant and desirable.

How about a tread-y handbag?

The Colorado-based company, English Retreads creates attractive handbags made from re-purposed inner-tubes.

 There's a hole in my bucket, dear Liza! 

If only Henry had thought to make the bucket out of an old rubber tyre! What better material to hold water?!

Thought of another way to recycle tyres? We'd love to hear about it!

29 September, 2011

Cumbria Police urge motorists to take the 20p tyre test!

This month is tyre safety month and not just for us- Cumbria Police are also due to launch their month long campaign next week, urging drivers to check their tyres and ensure they are safe and legal before winter sets in.


Dozens of people are killed and hundreds injured across the UK each year due to illegal, defective or under-inflated tyres causing collisions. 

PC Shaun McKeown, a Forensic Vehicle Examiner with Cumbria Constabulary’s Collision Investigation Unit, said: “Road safety is a priority for police in Cumbria and we are determined to prevent another tragedy by getting people to take a few minutes to check their tyres, and get them changed if they don’t meet the 20p tread test".

What’s the 20p tread test?

“To check the tread on your tyres, use the 20p test. Simply insert a 20p coin into the main tread grooves of your vehicle’s tyres. If the outer rim of the coin is covered by the tread, this indicates sufficient tread depth to be safe and legal. If the outer rim of the coin is visible, or if you are not sure, have your tyres inspected by a qualified professional.”

So if I can’t see the 20p coin, I’m ok?

No!  Although tread depth is an important factor when it comes to tyres, you should also do the following things:

• Check your tyre pressure at least once a month.

• Tyre pressure should be checked against the vehicle manufacturer’s recommended level. This can be found in the vehicle handbook and on a plate which is often located inside the fuel filler flap or on the driver’s door sill. 

• Check the pressure when tyres are cold (i.e. when you have travelled less than two miles). 

• If you are carrying a full load of passengers or luggage or will be towing a trailer or caravan, tyre pressures should be increased in line with the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendations. Details can be found in the handbook.

• Ensure a reliable and accurate pressure gauge is used. 

• Check the pressure in all four tyres – and don’t forget to check the spare tyre as well.

• While checking pressures, give the rest of the tyre a visual inspection. Remove any stones and other objects embedded in the tread. Look out for any bulges, lumps or cuts. 

Ok, I’ll get round to it tomorrow

Tomorrow never comes. If you don’t have the time to do these safety checks yourself or are unsure as to how to perform them, get in touch with us! We’re happy to provide free tyre checks and also talk you through some of the more simple checks you can do at home on your own. 

I’ll just risk it

Besides the obvious safety risks you become subject to whilst driving on illegal tyres, you’re also at risk of facing a fine and 3 points for each tyre that isn’t up to standard! PC McKeown went on to say that, “In a bid to prevent another tragedy, we will be out and about conducting stop checks across Cumbria to educate drivers about the risks. Motorists found to be driving on illegal tyres face a maximum penalty of three points per tyre on their license and a fine of up to £2,500 per tyre”. 

Feel free to call us if you think your tyres are illegal or if you just want to pop in and get them checked. We’re happy to help 01539 879893.

27 September, 2011

Pope or physics?

A little girl gets run over by a reversing 22-seater bus and survives with nothing more than a few cuts and bruises. How? Because she was kissed by the Pope.

Now don't call me a cynic but it can't have been anything to do with the fact the vehicle had dual rear tyres? We're all glad she's ok and doing well but when I first heard the story, my mind immediately started thinking about the technical side of things. Surely the contact pressure of the weight of the vehicle being spread over twice the area of a single wheel vehicle helped her escape unscathed?

Magicians and magic masters across the world must be pretty annoyed that a three-year-old has revealed the logistics behind one of their favourite tricks.

Sorry Criss Angel...

However tempted you may be, please do NOT try this at home!!!

22 September, 2011

Winter is coming early this year!

Are you prepared? Do you have your winter tyres ready? Do you know the difference between winter and summer tyres?  According to a study conducted by Continental, 47% of UK motorists were completely unaware that winter tyres even existed, with only a small minority of drivers changing their tyres to suit the weather. 

Whilst majority of motorists believe that switching between regular and winter tyres is not a necessary task, changing your car’s tyres is actually one of the most important things a driver can do once winter rolls around.

Why are they so important?

Anytime the temperature dips to below 7° C, you should be using winter tyres. They improve driving in various road conditions including slush, ice, frost, snow and even wet roads, enabling better traction, thus less slipping and consequential accidents. Given the standard of British weather and the forecasts of an ‘early Winter’ (snow is predicted to fall in October), winter tyres are a wise investment for any UK motorist.
Summer tyres take twice as long to stop in snow as winter tyres and when driving on ice, having winter tyres enables you to stop in two thirds of the time. Tirerack tested the Bridgestone Blizzak WS60 winter tyre against the BridgestoneRE050A ultra high performance summer tyre in icy conditions. From just 10mph the winter tyre stopped in 6.4 metres, while the summer tyre needed more than twice the distance to stop at over 14 metres. These figures are even more important when taking into account the huge increase in accidents throughout winter; The number of accidents caused by wet conditions increases in winter by 267%. Give yourself a chance of avoiding someone else's incident by fitting winter tyres.

If going ahead with a Winter tyre replacement, please bear in mind that all 4 tyres should be replaced. If you only replace one axle pair, your car may skid or leave you with less control and whilst you might have saved a few pennies, is it worth skimping on safety?  

Call us if you want some free, no obligation advise! 01539 879893