Swinton Car TV

How to check your tyre treads

Swinton "Car How To" guide for checking car tyre treads

Before checking your car tyre tread park your car on a level surface, engine off, handbrake on.

Step by step instructions

Keeping an eye on your tyre treads is another of those little fixes that helps look after your car, keep you safe and give you confidence on the road.

1. Carry out a basic check with a 20p coin, which is over 2mm deep.
2. Place the coin in different sections of the tyre tread.
3. It should be comfortably over minimum legal depth of 1.6mm.

You can also use a tread depth gauge. If you're close to 1.6mm, it's time for new tyres! Look out for cuts or splits too while carrying out your checks, if you see anything unusual call a professional

How to check your car engine oil

Oil reduces friction in your engine, keeping it running smoothly.

As part of our ‘Car How To’ video series, we have created a handy guide to how to check your car engine oil using a dipstick.

Step by step instructions

As part of our ‘Car How To’ video series, we have created a handy guide to how to check your car engine oil using a dipstick. Car engine oil reduces the friction in your engine and keeps it running smoothly.

Ideally you should check your oil regularly, especially if you have an older vehicle.

Before checking your oil

Park your car on a level surface, engine off, handbrake on.

Check what type of oil your car engine requires. About 50% of oil bought is wrong for the car. 

Your car’s handbook will tell you what type of oil you should use and what the minimum amount is.

Checking your oil

1. Open your bonnet to locate your car’s dipstick. It is usually on the left side of the engine.
2. Remove the dipstick, give it a wipe with a clean rag, reinsert the dipstick then bring it back out. 
3. It is important to check two things here - quality and quantity.
4. Quantity is the level, which will show on your dipstick. You should have minimum and maximum indicators, the oil level should be inbetween these two indicators.
5. Check quality by rubbing a bit of the oil between your thumb and finger. If it leaves a smudge, then it probably needs changing.
6. Now you can either top it up or replace the oil.

Losing oil

If you find you’re losing oil quite quickly, or the oil is foamy or milky, then you might have a leak. Get it checked out by a professional.

Now we’ve shown you how to check your car engine oil, if you need any more tips visit our ‘Car How To’ series.

How to check your tyre pressure

A handy guide to checking your tyre pressure.

Tyre Pressure. Helps save fuel. Makes tyres last longer. Before checking your tyre pressure. Park your car on a level surface, engine off, handbrake on.

Step by step instructions

As part of our ‘Car How To’ video series, the team at Swinton have created a handy guide to checking your tyre pressure. Maintaining the right tyre pressure helps save fuel and makes tyres last longer.

Before checking your tyre pressure

Park your car on a level surface, engine off, handbrake on.

First, you need to know what pressure measurement your tyres are using. It can be in PSI or BAR.

You can find out your vehicles’ recommended pressure by doing one of three things

  • Checking your vehicle manual
  • Looking inside the petrol cap
  • Or checking inside the driver’s door

You should check your tyre pressure for normal and heavy loads.

Once you’ve got that sorted, you can see if the pressure is right. You’ll need a pressure gauge.

You can buy a pressure gauge to suit your budget online or at most garages or specialist car parts retailers.

Checking your tyre pressure

1. Check pressure when tyres are cold, warm tyres can give a less accurate reading.
2. Remove the dust cap from the valve on your tyre, fix on the gauge and get the reading. Easy.
3. If your tyres are underinflated, just add a little air and check again. If your tyres are overinflated, just release a little bit of air. Check the pressure until you’ve got it right.
4. Repeat for each tyre and replace the valve when you have finished.

That’s the tyre pressure sorted. But if you need any more tips read our ‘Car How To’ series.

Disclaimer

Our “Car How To” videos bring you handy hints which we hope will save you time and money, but please remember, this video is a general one and may not be suitable for your specific purpose. This video is not intended as a substitute for professional help or guidance, always speak to a trained professional and where applicable, always consult manufacturer’s handbook.