WASHINGTONMen tend to be more tire smart than women and older drivers know basic tire care better than younger drivers, according to the findings of a new survey carried out on behalf of the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA) to coincide with National Tire Safety Week, June 2-8.
The RMA, which represents tire makers in the U.S., said the survey shows that just one in six U.S. drivers is considered tire smart when it comes to checking tire pressures. In terms of the gender gap, the association said about 20 percent of men vs. 14 percent of women surveyed know to check tire pressure monthly; know to check tires when they are cold (before driving) and; know where to find the correct inflation pressure for their vehicle's tires a tire information label on the driver's door or door jamb or in the owner's manual.
The difference between generations is more stark, the RMA said27 percent of drivers aged 60 and older are considered tire smart while only 8 percent of drivers 18-39 know the basic tips for checking tire pressure properly. Underinflated tires pose a safety risk, waste fuel and cause premature tire wear.
The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that properly inflated tires can save about 11 cents a gallon at today's gas prices.
Release of the survey coincides with the RMA-sponsored National Tire Safety Week, an initiative within the group's Be Tire Smart - Play Your PART consumer tire care education programPART standing for Pressure, Alignment, Rotation and Tread.