Sunday, 13 May 2007

Tyre Pressures & Karma

Although I haven't posted about it before, one of the first things I wanted to do when I got my Beetle was to check the tyre pressure.

Strangely, neither John Muir's book nor my Haynes manual seems to contain the necessary information. In the end I asked on the VZi forum and the results were rather surprising, not just because of the numbers (a mere 18psi on the front and 27psi on the rear) but because of the number of other VZi members who responded to the information with posts along the lines of "Really? Are you sure?"

Laurence Fletcher, the guy who posted the info, said it came "straight out of VW's own dealer service manual" and indeed I've since found some stickers over at VWHeritage (click here to see them) that are reproductions of a sticker that VW (apparently) used to stick inside the glovebox. The sticker says 19psi and 27psi but either way it's a lot lower, especially on the front, than a lot of the folks over at VZi had been using. Indeed my own bug was at about 30psi all round and after dropping them down to what they should be, the ride is quite a bit smoother.

While we're on the subject of tyres, the Haynes manual suggests swapping the wheels around every 6000 miles such that they wear evenly however John Muir is quite emphatic, he even puts it on bold text, that you should not do this. Mr Muir says "it takes about 500 miles for a tire to get used to its position on a car, and changing it around just messes with its head. It will last as long or longer right where it is." I'm with Mr Muir on this one because I'd be pretty pissed if somebody swapped the soles of my shoes everytime I got them all worn in and comfy, and I don't need any bad karma for messing with my tyre's heads. ;-)

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