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How: Variable Weather Can Affect Your Vehicle

The winter possesses a unique set of challenges for drivers. Snow, rain and ice often coalesce into a challenging drive for commuters. Vehicle tires undergo tremendous stress during changing weather conditions. During periods of extreme temperature fluctuations (up or down), tire pressure can fluctuate enough to signal-on the tire pressure light in newer vehicles. Additionally, incorrect tire pressure can lower fuel economy, make a vehicle more susceptible to damage from potholes, impact vehicle handling, and cause tires to wear quickly and/or unevenly.

ALTERNATING TIRE PRESSURE

Changing weather conditions attributes to the measurement of pressure in your tires. Hot weather or a long road trip will increase tire pressure. However, very cold weather can cause your tire pressure to deviate from the recommended inflation pressure, activating the TPMS (Tire Pressure Monitoring System)* in newer vehicles. Most TPMS monitor under-inflation as it poses a greater risk while driving. Tires will wear unevenly on the inner or outer most edges of the tire. An under-inflated tire is not only noisier, it creates more frictional heat, and, therefore, more prone to blowouts. Furthermore, an under-inflated tire can cause costly damage to your vehicle during the pot-hole season. The tire will have difficulty absorbing the impact from potholes which can cause damage to rims, or worse.

Source: DriveSure.com

Tire pressure changes while sitting overnight or during a long commute to work. Pressure can change by up to 5-psi from a 20-30 minute drive vs when parked overnight. Additionally, if the outside air temperature decreases by 5.5 degrees Celsius, the tire pressure will fall 1-psi. Conversely, if the air temperature increases 5.5 degrees Celsius, the tire pressure will rise by 1-psi.

It is recommended to check tire pressure at least once a month for all tires on your vehicle. It is important to note that you should only add or release air from your tires, after your vehicle has been sitting for several hours.

*Many newer vehicles (beyond 2008) have a tire pressure sensor that constantly measures the inflation of each tire.

TIRE PRESSURE & FUEL ECONOMY

Generally, the acceptable tire pressure range is between 30-35 PSI. Automotive manufacturers have different pressure specifications, designed to provide the maximum performance based on the vehicle. Refer to the gas tank cover or drivers-side door panel to find a vehicles recommended tire pressure. On the side-wall of a vehicle tire, the maximum allowed pressure is shown. It’s important to note this number is the maximum pressure the tire can operate at during full load. This number is not the pressure rating your tire should be inflated to.

Fuel economy will be impacted by improper tire inflation. The U.S. Department of Energy says that for every 1-psi drop in pressure, you can expect your gas mileage to lower by 0.4 percent. Inflating a tire beyond what is recommended from the vehicle manufacturer can improve fuel economy. Doing so can sacrifice handling and comfort; the vehicle will ride harshly over imperfections in the road. Additionally, the center thread of tire will wear quicker.

TIP: before towing a trailer, or a load of people add a couple PSI to the back wheels. Refer to your vehicle to see the recommended “at load” pressure.

CHECKING TIRE PRESSURE

Pick-up a standard or digital tire pressure gauge. In the morning, or before a long drive remove the cap from valve stem. Measure the PSI of pressure by firmly pushing the gauge to the vale stem. Ensure there is no air leak between the nipple and gauge to collect an accurate reading.

References:

https://www.tirebuyer.com/education/tire-inflation-pressure-and-temperature
https://www.cartalk.com/content/summer-driving-tips-6
https://m.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/you-can-blame-the-weather-on-t/41518
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BREAKING: HURRICANE MICHAEL Major Impact on US Southeast

Tropical storm Michael is currently on a NNW trajectory off the Yucatan Peninsula. Michael is expected to strengthen throughout early next week.

Rapid intensification before landfall is possible given key factors:

1. The compact size of the storm.                                   2. Little shear along the forecast track.                      3. 30c Sea Surface Temperatures.

Projected landfall from the National Hurricane Center.

Land fall as a strong Category 2 hurricane is possible near Eastpoint, Florida. Dangerous Flash flooding with 200-350mm of rainfall is possible in the Tallahassee area. Coastal storm surge and wind gusts upwards of 170-200km/h are possible.

Georgia, and unfortunately, South Carolina will also see significant rainfall and winds gusting over 100km/h based on current model guidance.

Ontario

Wet & Stormy Tuesday Across the Lower Great Lakes

Heavy thunderstorms expected Tuesday (August 21st, 2018) across Southern Ontario.

Rain-showers or thunderstorms are expected to begin moving into deep Southwestern Ontario overnight Monday into Tuesday. Convection will spread throughout Southern Ontario throughout the morning and afternoon as a maturing-low approaches from the US. Another round is possible by the mid-evening along the shores of Lake Huron.

BRIEF CLEARING? & HEAVY RAINFALL

There may be some brief clearing stretching from the Golden Horseshoe into Southwestern Ontario. This would add more energy and instability, allowing for some isolated severe thunderstorms capable of very-strong winds and short-lived rotation.

Much of the day however, is expected to be dominated by cloud, showers and passing heavy thunderstorms – perhaps several rounds. This could lead to locally significant rainfall-totals. With the threat of localized flooding. Widespread amounts between 30-50mm is expected.

BENEFICIAL RAIN:

East of Georgian Bay stretching into East of Superior will see a beneficial, soaking rainfall from this system. Which will help alleviate forest fire concerns, plaguing the region this summer.

WIND:

This will be an early fall-like system for the Great Lakes. As we move deeper into August we are beginning to enter a transitional period, where low-pressure systems produce synoptic rain and wind over a larger area. Widespread winds gusting between 50-70km/h are expected between Tuesday late-afternoon, and through the evening.

No need for “the end of sunmer blues” quite yet, temperatures by this weekend will be near 30c feeling closer to 40c with the humdity factored in.