When it comes to maintaining optimal tyre performance and safety, many drivers are turning to nitrogen-filled tyres as an alternative to traditional air-filled ones. Nitrogen tyre inflation involves replacing the regular air inside the tyres with pure nitrogen gas.
In this guide, we explore what nitrogen-filled tyres are, why they are gaining popularity, and how to get them installed on your vehicle.
What are Nitrogen-Filled Tyres?
Nitrogen-filled tyres are tyres that have been inflated with pure nitrogen gas instead of regular air. Nitrogen is an inert gas that has larger molecules compared to oxygen and other gases found in ambient air. This unique property makes it less prone to leakage, temperature changes, and moisture absorption, resulting in more stable tyre pressure over time.
Why Choose Nitrogen-Filled Tyres?
1. Improved tyre Pressure Stability
One of the primary advantages of nitrogen-filled tyres is the enhanced stability of tyre pressure. Unlike regular air-filled tyres, nitrogen-filled tyres experience minimal pressure fluctuations due to changes in temperature. This stability ensures that the tyres maintain the recommended pressure, which in turn improves fuel efficiency, tyre wear, and overall handling.
2. Reduction in tyre Leakage
Nitrogen molecules are larger than oxygen molecules, which means they are less likely to seep through the rubber tyre walls or the tyre valve system. This reduced leakage rate means that nitrogen-filled tyres retain their pressure for a more extended period, reducing the frequency of tyre pressure checks and top-ups.
3. Moisture Prevention
Nitrogen is an exceptionally dry gas. When tyres are filled with nitrogen, moisture and water vapor are eliminated, preventing the accumulation of moisture inside the tyre. This is particularly beneficial as excess moisture can lead to corrosion of the rims and internal components, impacting tyre longevity.
4. Enhanced Safety
Properly inflated tyres are crucial for safe driving. Nitrogen-filled tyres help maintain consistent tyre pressure, reducing the risk of underinflation or overinflation, which can lead to poor handling, decreased traction, and increased chances of blowouts. By improving tyre safety, nitrogen-filled tyres contribute to overall road safety.
5. Environmental Benefits
Nitrogen tyres can also have a positive impact on the environment. With improved fuel efficiency resulting from optimal tyre pressure, nitrogen-filled tyres can help reduce carbon emissions by improving fuel economy. Additionally, since the tyres maintain their pressure for longer periods, there is less frequent need for tyre replacements, reducing the number of discarded tyres.
How to Get Nitrogen-Filled tyres
If you are interested in nitrogen-filled tyres, there are a few options available to you:
- Tyre retailers and dealerships – Many tyre retailers and dealerships offer nitrogen tyre inflation as a service. They have the necessary equipment to remove the existing air from your tyres and replace it with nitrogen.
- Automotive service centres – Some automotive service centres also provide nitrogen tyre inflation. If you already have a trusted service centre that you visit for regular maintenance, inquire about their nitrogen tyre inflation services.
- DIY nitrogen inflation kits – Nitrogen inflation kits are not yet readily available for purchase in South Africa, but these allow you to fill your tyres with nitrogen at home. Kits typically include a nitrogen tank, a regulator, and the necessary fittings. However, it's important to note that DIY kits may not provide the same level of purity and accuracy as professional nitrogen inflation.
Maintaining Nitrogen-Filled tyres
While nitrogen-filled tyres offer several benefits, it's important to note that they still require regular maintenance and care. Here are some essential tips for maintaining nitrogen-filled tyres:
- Regular pressure checks – Although nitrogen-filled tyres experience less pressure fluctuation, it's still important to check the tyre pressure regularly and maintain it at the recommended level.
- Tread and wear inspection – Regularly inspect the tread depth and overall wear of your tyres. Uneven wear or significant tread depth changes may indicate alignment or suspension issues that need to be addressed.
- Tyre rotation – Follow the recommended tyre rotation schedule to ensure even wear across all tyres. This will help extend the lifespan of your tyres and maintain optimal performance.
- Professional inspection – Periodically have your tyres inspected by a professional to identify any potential issues, such as punctures or damage, that may affect tyre performance and safety.
Nitrogen-filled tyres offer several benefits compared to traditional air-filled tyres. With improved pressure stability, reduced leakage, and enhanced safety, they are becoming a popular choice among drivers. The option to fill your car tyres with nitrogen is an individual choice. Whether you choose to have your tyres filled with nitrogen at a tyre retailer, dealership, or opt for a DIY kit, maintaining proper tyre pressure and regular inspections remain crucial for tyre performance and safety.
Consider the advantages of nitrogen-filled tyres and decide if they are the right choice for your vehicle and driving needs. It’s important to note that regular tyre maintenance is still absolutely necessary, and inflating your tyres with nitrogen still requires the need to check your tyre pressure, wheel balancing, and wheel alignment.
Disclaimer: This information is for educational, or entertainment purposes only. It must not be construed as advice, legal, financial, or otherwise. We do not make any warranties about the completeness, reliability, and accuracy of this information.