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  • When it gets cold outside you may notice your tire pressure light comes on in your car.
  • Should you fill them up, or is it just because it's cold outside?
  • Tire pressure drops 1-2 PSI for every 10-degree change in temperature.

During our recent cold snap, I got in the car to drive to work, and the tire pressure light came on. I noted that the tires needed some air, but I have places to be so I just left anyway.

Some vehicles have a very sensitive tire pressure monitoring system, and it seems like it cries wolf in winter. Once you drive for a few minutes the light usually goes off, so should you fill them up?

The short answer is yes. You should fill your tires to the recommended pressure before leaving the house or at a convenience store.

In Texas during the winter, this could be a weekly chore.

Easily Find The Recommended Pressure For Your Car

Vehicles have little stickers on the inside of the door jams that will tell you the amount of air pressure that should be in your tires. The tires themselves have a max rating on them, but go with your vehicle's recommendation if you have stock wheels and tires.

Why Is The Light On? My Tires Were Fine Yesterday! 

When temperatures drop, according to the air molecules move slower and huddle together. Even though your tires might not be technically losing air, the tire pressure is lower.

If you keep your tires at the proper pressure you will have longer tire life, better alignment, and handling. You should also check the tires when temperatures warm back up outside, as driving with overinflated tires causes them to wear unevenly.

It's also a safety issue with your tires having less contact with the road.

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