When you go off-roading, one of the first and most basic things you can do to improve
traction is to air your tyres down. Airing your tyres down gives them a larger footprint.
The contact patch between the tyre and the surface of the road becomes larger giving
better traction. This is a cheap and easy thing to do to improve your vehicles off-road
capabilities and performance. Depending on what type of terrain you are driving on,
you may want to air down to different pressures. If you are just going to be driving
on a dirt road, airing down a little can add to the comfort of your ride and prevent
tyre and track damage. If you are driving on sand however, you way want to air way
down so as to give your vehicle the most flotation possible and keep on top of the
sand so you can keep moving.
Because of all the different possibilities of vehicles, vehicle weights, tyre size's
and types, we are not going to recommend an exact pressure for your vehicle or terrain
but rather only give some basic guidelines.
Refer to the pictures below to understand the advantages of lower tyre pressures.
For soft sand driving most drivers will deflate to 15 to 20 psi.
For gravel and rough tracks most drivers will deflate by 10 to 25 percent of street
pressure, this helps with the rolling obstacle resistance.
Now comes the problem:- Use Caution! with low tyre pressure. The Obstacle Rolling
Resistance factor works against you with speed and in the rocks! Soft tyres easily
bend, damage rims and can come away from the rim. Drive with caution and when back
on hard ground you obviously need some way to reinflate the tyres back to street
Tread Lightly !
Lower pressure is more ecologically compatible and with better traction you don’t
have to spin the tyres and hence leave Mother Nature unscathed.
You’ll be doing yourself and Mother Nature a favour when you lower your tyre pressure
the next time you go off-road.
To return to the main HOME page click on this logo.