Hankook survey reveals tire maintenance skills

June 30, 2011

In a survey conducted by Hankook Tire America Corp., 70% of Americans plan to take a road trip this summer, with 29% hitting the roads this weekend for the 4th of July holiday alone. 

Hankook says the average road tripper will log 725 miles on their tires and while 7 in 10 Americans are at least somewhat confident in how to properly maintain their tires, 22% are not confident they could change a flat tire if they had to. 

The first ever Hankook Tire Gauge Index -- a survey of 1,001 Americans conducted on the subject of proper tire maintenance -- shows that less than 50% of drivers planning road trips are very confident they know what the proper tread depth is on their tires, and how to check for it. A little more than that (53%) are very confident they know the proper tire pressure on their vehicle and how to check it. 

And yet Americans say they're getting prepared. Tire pressure has been checked in the last month by 71%, while 63% say they have checked their tire tread depth.

"Our Tire Gauge Index reinforces proper tire maintenance for summer road trippers," says Henry Kopacz, Hankook Tire America's tire expert. "Our research shows more than three quarters (78%) of summer travel will be done with children under 18. With some basic tire maintenance tips and tricks, consumers can ensure their families' safety, the safety of others on the road, and save some money in the process."

Hankook’s tire tips for consumers include checking pressure at least once a month, checking tread wear, avoiding over-inflation and using low-rolling resistance tires. Hankook notes that properly inflated tires can save as much as 11 cents per gallon.

Additional findings from the survey include:

Westerners are most likely to travel for the 4th of July holiday (35%);

Northeasterners are planning shorter trips (summer average of 525.8 miles);

Gender may play a role in tire knowledge, as 72% of men are very sure they could change a tire, while only 35% of females are confident they can perform the task.