Tire Pressure in Winter

Last week, famous groundhog Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow. Traditionally that means we will be getting six more weeks of winter. In Texas, that means we will occasionally have cold nights and early mornings that will force us to adjust the AC in our vehicles until lunch time. However, that also means that the tire pressure warning lights may come on when you start your vehicle in the morning. Why? And how urgent is this warning?

The warning light is an indication that the air pressure in one of the vehicle’s tires is too low. How low? Certain modern vehicles will tell you the exact tire pressure on each wheel and at what level it is supposed to be at. Visually if the tire appears to be flat then it does not matter what the air pressure is because it is actually unsafe for travel. If you receive a tire pressure warning light, it is recommended that you get out and do a visual inspection of your vehicle’s tires.  A driver should always be vigilant of their vehicle.

Something in the Air and In Your Tires

So why do tires lose pressure during cold weather months? Air contracts when the temperature drops. It’s normal for temperatures in Texas to act like our stomachs during a roller coaster ride. That dynamic flux in temperature can cause tires to lose pressure as the air inside expands and contracts during the day. According to the Boston Globe, air pressure in a tire can drop between 1-2 pounds for every 10 degrees temperature drops. Doesn’t sound like a lot, but if you haven’t checked your tires all summer it could mean another warning light on your dashboard.

Tire Pressure Tips

Our tires offer the contact point between us and the road so making sure they are in their best condition is step one in vehicle maintenance and accident prevention. If you see the tire pressure warning light appear in your vehicle’s dashboard, here are a few tips to help you.


  • Cold tires offer accurate readings – Checking tire pressure after being on the road could give you a reading that is slightly inaccurate. Best time to check and fill up a tire is when the tires are cold meaning they have not rolled yet.
  • Use high quality pressure gauges – Given the important job vehicle tires have in keeping us safe on the road, don’t skimp out on cheap pressure gauges. Digital gauges and dial-face gauges offer accurate readings compared to analog gauges.
  • Routine Checks – When the seasons change, or temperature goes bipolar, make time to check tire pressure. Tire shops usually offer free tire inspections and will check tire pressure for you.

Tires affect how our vehicles handle, preform, and their fuel economy. Having safe rubber on your car or truck is not a luxury it’s a necessity for safety. According to Consumer Reports, under inflated tires can triple the risk of being involved in a car crash.

Jeff is Here 4 You

As always we recommend you stay vigilant and perform routine maintenance on your vehicle.  If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in an accident Jeff is here for you! Davis Law Firm is here 24/7 to listen to your case. Our team of accident attorneys offer free consultations at no risk to you. Jeff Davis is the South Texas lawyer that is here to fight for what you deserve! Contact us today.