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What is the Best Tire Pressure for Highway Driving (Is 45 psi Too Much Air?)

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Last updated on February 3rd, 2022 at 06:19 am

Many of the road accidents recorded are traced to tire pressure problems. It is dangerous to have an overinflated and an underinflated tire and so having in mind the best tire pressure for highway driving and making sure that your tire pressure is within its limit will save you from being a victim of tire pressure related accidents.

The tire pressure of cars varies depending on the model, weight, and function. The best tire pressure for highway driving can only be determined based on the pressure limit of your car’s tires, as recommended by the manufacturer. The best way to know this limit is by checking the owner’s manual or the information sticker on the driver’s door jamb. Depending on your type of car, you can also realize that the pressure limit for your front tires and that of your back tires are not the same. You can also find this information on the trunk’s inner lid or in the glove box.

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Do not ever try to guess the pressure limit of your tires; that would be dangerous. Most cars have a minimum of 30 psi and a maximum of 44 psi pressure limit. Sticking to the pressure maximum limit is vital to your car’s lifespan, its overall performance, and your safety, including that of other road users. 

I will be using this article to tell you what it means when a tire says 44 psi max, the recommended tire pressure for 44 psi max, and the recommended tire pressure for 40 psi max. I will also answer the questions, is 45 psi too much air and how do you know if you put too much air in your tires?

What Does it Mean When a Tire Says 44 psi max

If a tire says 44 psi max, it means that the maximum pressure the tire can take is 44 psi. It is the pressure level which the tire can safely withstand without causing damage to the tires. It is however not the recommended tire pressure.

Although it is not a must that you should inflate the tire to exactly 44 psi, in fact, it is advisable that you don’t. You can fill 10% below the psi, not higher. Going beyond the maximum psi can affect the tires, your driving, and even your life.

For a tire with 44 psi max tire pressure, the tire pressure should be between 40 psi and 43 psi. As long as you do not exceed 44 psi, you are good to go. However, going below 40 psi can be underinflation.

The tire pressure for a tire with 40 psi max should be between 36 psi and 39 psi. Just because your owner’s manual reads 40 psi max doesn’t mean that you should make it 40 psi. That is just the limit you are expected not to exceed. It is crucial that you stay below or within the maximum pressure. Exceeding it would make the pressure high, which is overinflation and it is dangerous. Do not go below 36 psi because that would mean your tires are underinflated which is also really dangerous. Having a balance is vital.

Is 45 psi Too Much Air?

This depends on the recommended pressure limit of your car tires. However, 45 psi is too much air for most passenger cars, as most tires have a pressure limit of 44 psi. Like earlier mentioned, it is important that you do not exceed the car manufacturer’s recommended pressure, as stated in the owner’s manual or information sticker on the driver’s door jamb. Doing this will only result in wearing the tires, poor handling, discomfort while driving, reduction in the effectiveness of the shock absorber, overheating, blowouts, and possibly an accident.

How Do You Know if You Put Too Much Air in your Tires?

A tire that has too much air has been over-inflated. When inflating your tires, you can know if you’ve put too much air in the tires by using a tire pressure gauge to measure and ensure that all tires are rightly filled, per the recommended maximum pressure. You can ask a mechanic to help you measure it if you can’t.

If the tires are to be filled equally ensure that no one is filled higher or lower than the other. If the pressure level of the front tires is different from that of the back tires, make sure that front tires are filled equally and so are the back tires.

Apart from using a gauge, there are other ways to know if you put too much air in your tires. They include tire pressure monitoring system’s warning lights, smaller contact patch, Wearing of the middle treads, and Discomfort while driving.

  • 1.   Warning Lights

    The newer generation of cars produced come with tire pressure monitoring systems that monitor the pressure of air in the tires. It indicates when a tire has been over or underinflated through warning lights.

  • 2.   Smaller Contact Patch

    When a tire is overinflated, the contact patch that gives the car its grip becomes smaller and bulged in the middle. Only the center of the contact patch touches the ground causing loss of traction. This is a very obvious sign that the tires are overinflated.

  • 3.   Wearing of the Middle Treads

    Since the contact patch has become smaller and only the center is touching the ground, the tire threads in the middle will start wearing out compared to other sides of the tire.

  • 4.   Discomfort While Driving

    Less grip of the tires to the road causes discomfort while driving. The car will get to experience instability and the driver may even lose control. The tires most times get stiffened and there is a reduction in the effectiveness of the shock absorber causing the passengers to feel all the shocks on uneven and bumpy roads

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Gift is a Radiographer and Autobody parts mechanic who recently got his automotive diploma as an autobody repair technician. Gift loves everything about cars and fitness. He also loves researching and sharing his expertise and experiences with those who wants to learn more.

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