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Pirelli adds to the P Zero range with the 'Silver' derived from F1 experience.

Pirelli is launching the first road car tyre derived directly from the experience it gained providing tyres for Formula One.

The P Zero Silver has been developed for sports cars and sporting saloons, at the same time as the first F1 tests that mark the launch of the 2012 season take place.

The new tyre expands the P Zero range, and marks the first in a series of highly specialised Pirelli road car tyres, ensuring the maximum level of performance. According to Pirelli: “Thanks to the same processes that are used in Formula One, Pirelli underlines some of the key characteristics of the entire P Zero range through the new Silver – with the emphasis on durability.

“The structure, compound and tread pattern design of the Silver have been developed to resist any deformation in the tyre’s profile, lengthening the tyre’s life and extending the consistency of its performance. The Silver has been conceived for drivers who enjoy performance and use their cars frequently. The P Zero Silver is particularly designed for people who drive their cars every day and cover more than 12,000 miles per year, mostly on motorways.”

It allows everyday motorists to benefit from the main innovations and production processes introduced for F1 and supplied to all the grand prix teams last year.

This latest road tyre from the famous P Zero range shares the same mathematical modeling process with its Formula One equivalent. In particular, the design and development took place using the same state of the art computer simulation, which allows the tyre’s performance and behavior to be assessed under an extremely wide range of conditions.

The new tyre will be produced in eight sizes, for 19 to 20 inch wheels, and will be available as a limited edition in European markets from April 2012.

With the Silver, Pirelli is particularly concentrating on W, Y and Z speed ratings (i.e. for speeds greater than or equal to 270km / h) with 19-inch wheels.


wrong tyre fitted to a mini

Called to change the tyres on a Mini in Waterlooville, the customer had just bought it from a local garage with a new MOT. The car in question had just had its near side front tyre replaced to get it through the MOT. Yet whoever had replaced the tyre had put a normal tyre instead of a Runflat. So two mistakes were made: one by the tyre fitter not putting the right type of tyre, and one by the MOT station in not noticing that the tyre was wrong. This should have been an MOT failure as it was a dangerous mistake, as the new owner had he had a puncture could have continued driving on it thinking he had a runflat, until he either damaged the wheel, or worse still caused an accident, by not being able to control the vehicle properly. So if you have Runflat tyres and have any changed, then make sure that the correct tyres are fitted.


Are Car Tyres made from natural rubber?

How Is The Rubber For Car Tyres Made?

Have you ever wondered how rubber is made? We took a look in to the production of rubber. There are two types of rubber; synthetic and natural rubber. Natural rubber is made from rubber trees and they say money does not grow on trees! Huge plantations of these rubber trees are grown across many acres of land. The trees are cut early in the morning and the slits in the trees drip latex. This liquid latex is collected in buckets, which have to be emptied out every two to three hours. The workers then have to ensure that the latex is transported to the factory as quickly as possible. Any delays can mean that the latex itself will coagulate and this means that it is then quite simply useless. Although you will not find natural rubber in things like car tyres you will find natural rubber used to produce things such as elastic bands. Rubber as a product is not only very stretchy and bouncy, it is also very waterproof too. Some large jumbo jets are fitted with natural rubber tyres for the landing gear.

Many products today are made from synthetic rubbers. Synthetic rubber however uses the planets resources. Produced from fossil fuels such as coal, petroleum, acetylene and natural gas, although the manufacturing process of heating the rubber up to mould the rubber is similar. The man-made rubber once it is made forms clumps of rubber, this is then dried out and rolled into large sheets. These sheets can then be loaded on to lorries for transportation. The rubber sheets are then moved on to the factory, where production of the final item takes place. This could be anything from car tyres to children's toys.

Moulding rubber can be carried out in several ways. Extrusion is one of the most common methods used to mould rubber. Rubber is heated and the forced at high pressure through a small hole this method can produce long strands of rubber. Another method of moulding rubber is compression moulding and this again is done under heat and pressure, however this time the rubber is heated in a mould. The rubber is then left to cool in the mould and the rubber creates a replica of the mould. The final way of which rubber can be moulded is a method of injection moulding. This is achieved by heating rubber again which is then injected in to a mould and cooled to create the final product. So thats it! Car tyres are made from synthetic rubber...


Tyre labelling for customers, will start in 2012

Next November 2012 will see the introduction of a standardised tyre label by the European Union. The goal of the EU Tyre Label is to promote low emissions and better road safety, with standardised information focusing on three keycriteria: fuel efficiency, wet grip and external rolling noise. The move is intended to give consumers essential information to help them when choosing new tyres, the EU Label will be given values from A-G, excluding D, to avoid an average performing tyre. Wet braking will be a crucial element highlighted on the EU Label. Vehicles with tyres from Class A stop in the shortest distance from 50mph, whilst tyres from Class B take an additional 3-6 metres. This trend continues for the subsequent values and results in an increase in braking distance of over 18 metres from a vehicle in Class A to Class F. For wet braking Categories D and G are not used so any tyre with longer stopping distances in the wet will be rated as E or F. Rolling resistance of a tyre is a contributory factor when saving fuel, for this reason it features alongside the wet braking value. For example, a tyre from Class C will use 1 litre more fuel than that of a tyre from Class B over a journey of 625 miles. Such values are intended to aid consumers in purchasing tyres for their individual requirements. Another environmental factor, noise level, will also be highlighted on the label showing the actual noise rating in decibels and one, two or three black bars with three being the loudest category. Car tyres must reach the minimum EU noise levels which range from 72 to 76 dB(A) depending on tyre width. All tyre manufacturers will be obliged to provide a sticker on, or with, all tyres, which retailers must display in a clearly visible position to the end user. All tyres produced after July 1, 2012 will need to have a label value which must be shown to consumers after 1 November, 2012, although tyre manufacturers can begin to label earlier on a voluntary basis.


Does your cars tracking need checking?

Correct Wheel Alignment will ensure:- Reduced Tyre Wear Improper alignment is a major cause of premature tyre wear. Over the years, a properly aligned vehicle can add thousands of miles to tyre life.

Research indicates that the average car is driven about 12,000 miles per year. A car with toe alignment just 0.34 degrees (Just 0.17 inches) out of specification has dragged its tyres sideways for more than 68 miles by the end of the year! Have you ever driven a car where the steering wheel is slightly out of line when driving in a straight line and on a flat road? There’s a good chance that the alignment is incorrect and you are actually forcing the tyres to drag slightly against the natural tread direction.

Better Fuel Mileage
 MPG decreases as rolling resistance increases. A tyre is designed to run directly forward in order to maximise the benefits of its tread design and contact patch. A tyre that’s forced to rotate even slightly off this designed line will create vastly increased rolling resistance.

Improved Handling 
 A tyre should rotate in such a way that the contact area utilises 100% of the tread width. This is never more important than during wet road conditions. Many modern tyres are now of a directional or asymmetric design. In order to effectively disperse water and prevent aquaplaning the tyre tread must be used fully to benefit from its advanced design.

To explain in greater detail, look at a vehicle from a bird’s eye view. On most modern vehicles, the rear wheels are ‘fixed’ in direction and not used for steering (there are a few exceptions). The front wheels, usually connected to one another by a ‘rack’, perform the steering function. These are the wheels that the terms alignment or tracking refer to.

‘Wheel alignment may be considered to be the angles of the wheels relative to each other and the car.’ Steering that is out of alignment may cause steering and handling difficulties, vehicle instability under braking, excessive tyre wear and increased fuel consumption.

Precision wheel alignment equipment is used to measure all alignment angles on today’s cars. These include measurements of both adjustable and non-adjustable angles. (Incorrect non-adjustable angles may mean that repair or replacement of suspension or steering components is required.)

The most common adjustable angle is Toe:

•Toe - 
This refers to the angled direction of the wheels toward or away from one another at their front edge when viewed from the top. Toe is the most critical tyre wearing angle. •Positive Toe is the leading edge of the wheels closer together. Toe ‘in’
. •Negative Toe is the leading edge of the wheels further apart. Toe ‘out’. •Zero Toe is when the wheels are parallel. Hometyre service vehicles are equipped with Laser wheel aligners. The service is carried out on site provided we have good reasonably level ground to work on.


Avon produces new Van tyre range

Avon Tyres has launched the latest in its range of van tyres – the AV11.

Complementing the AV9, the new tyre is available in selected sizes, with an expanded fitment range coming later in the year.

Designed with long life and durability in mind for typically high-mileage vehicles, the R-rated AV11 is currently available from Avon stockists in sizes 215/60R16 C, 205/65R16 C, 215/65R16 C and 235/65R16 C.

Among the AV11’s features are robust sidewalls to cope with kerbing damage and a reinforced carcass, able to handle heavier than average loads. Meanwhile, the tyre also provides optimum wet-weather handling.

Nigel Hampson, sales and marketing director of Cooper Tire Europe, said, “We know that our van-driving customers often depend entirely on their vehicles for their livelihoods. For them, the choice of a tyre is far more crucial than the average motorist and that’s why we’ve designed the AV11 with those people in mind.

“The AV11 will stand up to relatively harsh treatment, be it heavy payloads or scuffing along kerbs and other obstacles that are the everyday perils of the average LCV. And, when it comes to inclement conditions, the AV11 ensures that a bad day of weather needn’t mean a bad day for your business.”


Yokohama produce a new tyre specifically for vans

Year-Round Performance for Commercial Drivers from Yokohama Tyres from Japanese manufacturer Yokohama have long been renowned for performance and safety under all conditions. The marque’s expertise and reputation is also available to the light commercial market, with a range of three patterns aimed at van drivers across all conditions and circumstances.

First in the commercial range is the RY818 tyre. Aimed predominantly at the urban delivery user, it features a flat tread pattern to maintain grip and safety under all vehicle load conditions while the design ensures exceptional water clearance in wet weather.

Its construction means that it will withstand the daily rigours of multiple deliveries, with its specially-designed kerbing rib protecting against sidewall damage, as well as resisting wear and generating long life and hence, value for money.

The Y354 is intended for vehicles carrying out longer journeys and in a variety of conditions. It is classed as an ‘All Season’ tyre, meaning that it will cope with all extremes of weather, so the operator can continue working come rain or shine. With its M+S and Snowflake markings, it is ready for all possible winter conditions.


2012 EU tyre labeling on tyres

2012 EU Tyre Label - Helping Consumers Make Better Decisions November 2012 will see the Introduction of a standardised tyre label by the European Union. The goal of the EU Tyre Label is to promote low emissions and better road safety, with standardised information focusing on three key criteria: fuel efficiency, wet grip and external rolling noise.

Intended to give consumers essential information to help them when choosing new tyres, the EU Label will be given values from A-G, excluding D to avoid an average performing tyre.

Wet braking will be a crucial element highlighted on the EU Label. Vehicles with tyres from Class A stop in the shortest distance from 50mph, whilst tyres from Class B take an additional 3-6 metres. This trend continues for the subsequent values and results in an increase in braking distance of over 18 metres from a vehicle in Class A to Class F. It is key that this crucial safety value appears on the label to enable the motorist to have a fuller picture of the tyres performance. A label that only highlighted rolling resistance and noise could give a false impression of the tyres performance. For wet braking Categories D and G are not used so any tyre with longer stopping distances in the wet will be rated as E or F.


Pirelli named most recommended tyre

Research conducted by Encircle Marketing reveals that Pirelli was the most recommended tyre brand in the UK during 2011, the second year running for the Italian-based manufacturer. The analysis, which continuously monitors brand recommendations in the market, found that Pirelli came top with 6.7 per cent of all recommendations.

Dominic Sandivasci, managing director of Pirelli UK, was reportedly delighted with the result and keen to recognise his team’s hard work: “Results like this are extremely important to us at Pirelli. Our premium reputation is built upon high levels of customer satisfaction and the fact that our brand is spreading through word of mouth is fantastic for our growth. We have to thank everyone who works at Pirelli for playing their part in developing and selling superb products, as well as offering such a high level of customer service.” In addition to the most recommended recognition, the company was also named 2011 Tyre Manufacturer of the Year


Hinko folding car production to start next year

Folding car moves closer to reality The Hiriko folding electric car is set to be launched this week before going into production next year. When folded, the Hiriko takes up two-thirds of the footprint of a Smart car By Michael Fitzpatrick (The telegraph) An electric car prototype that folds into itself to save parking space, and is powered by four in-wheel motors, will be launched tomorrow (Tuesday, January 24) by José Manuel Barroso, president of the European Commission, in Brussels.

The two-seat Hiriko, tipped to receive endorsement from EU leaders at its launch, is the result of a partnership of Basque businesses, the Spanish government and the US's renowned MIT Media Lab. The tiny bubble car is tipped to go into production in Spain next year.

Each wheel is independently driven and steered by "robot" in-wheel electric motors making for extra manoeuvrability, while the rear of the capsule-like city car can slip under the chassis. It then only takes up two-thirds of the footprint of a Smart car, claim its makers. The consortium behind the project hope this will allow cities to free up some of the many square miles of precious space parked cars currently inhabit.

Several European and American cities are to be the scenes for the initial trials. Such trials will closely resemble in execution Paris's new electric car hire/share scheme Autolib, according to the makers. Trials begin in autumn this year in cities such as Bilbao, Malmo and Boston.

Passenger and driver enter and leave the Hiriko through a single door on the front of the car. A conventional steering wheel will be replaced by a joystick arrangement or a "haptic" steering wheel that physically tugs at a driver's fingers when told to do so by the on board navigation systems.

Pictures follow the link:


Punctures not being repaired properly

STAFF at four garages have been given a warning after inspectors found tyres were being left in a dangerous state.

Staff from Trading Standards visited 10 garages to check if they were repairing damaged car tyres properly.

Inspectors found that four of those were not doing repairs correctly.

One-third of the 108 garages inspected also prompted concerns. Inspectors were worried punctured tyres that are repaired from the outside or that are patched rather than plugged could allow water to enter them.

In the worst-case scenario, that could cause a tyre to blow at high speed, putting lives at risk.

Inspectors issued advice and written guidance on what mechanics needed to do to meet the required standards.

Trading Standards manager Peter Jagger said: “We will be following up the survey to ensure that repairers are not putting the public at risk.”

Trading Standards spokesman Graeme Levy said: “The decision whether to repair or replace a punctured tyre is initially down to the motorist.

“However they should be able to trust that any repair will be carried out safely.

“We will continue to work with the trade to improve compliance but will take action against those that ignore advice and potentially put people's lives at risk.”

We at Hometyre can confirm that we only repair tyres to British Standards and use a plug repair. If in doubt ask to watch, we will happily show you how the repair is carried out correctly.


Winter tyre sales increase even with little snow on the ground

Fleet demand for cold weather tyres has soared to record levels in winter 2011-12.

Figures to the end of December last year reveal a massive 243% increase in sales versus the same period in 2010. Following the recent harsh winters many fleet managers decided not to risk being caught out in 2011-12 and opted to fit cold weather tyres in the autumn.

There was a surge in demand when the first snow fell in the Peak District, north of England and Scotland in November last year.

Although the bulk of the UK has been snow-free to date this winter, recent sub-zero temperatures across the country have played to the strengths of cold weather tyres.

Composed of more rubber and less silicone so they don’t harden as much when it is cold, winter tyres work best in temperatures under 7˚Celsius. Equipped with wider grooves it means they have greater grip in snow and slush and more sideways grooves to give more edges and contact with the road surface.

That translates into shorter braking distances which reduces the risk of a crash: at 20 mph a car or van equipped with winter tyres will stop 11 metres sooner on icy roads than if fitted with summer tyres; at 30 mph the braking distance on snowy roads is reduced by eight metres.

As well as improving road safety, swapping summer tyres for winter tyres designed to perform in the harshest of conditions could actually reduce fleet operating costs. 'Winter tyres can last as long as summer tyres and perform better in winter conditions. Depending on vehicle mileage, winter tyres could last for two or even three winters. As, a result wear and tear suffered by summer tyres, which is increased in harsh road conditions, is reduced so postponing their replacement.'

'Many fleet operators have acknowledged that winter tyres have a vital part to play in ensuring vehicles remain on the road in all conditions. Once snow has fallen the opportunity has been missed so fleet managers want to ensure their vehicles are well prepared to cope with winter driving conditions without putting drivers and their organisation’s ability to operate at risk.

'Fleet decision-makers can’t control the elements, but they can control the performance of their vehicle fleet to minimise downtime.'


Stolen Tyres

Stelaing tyres has become big business, some of the performance tyres used on the large BMW's, Porsches, Mercedes etc are worth hundreds of pounds per tyre. Although not easy to remove due to their size, they are easy to sell to motorists looking to save cash. The latest theft happened in Elgin, info from the BBC news:

Dozens of tyres worth thousands of pounds have been stolen in Elgin. About 100 tyres were taken from BS Tyres at the Moray town's Chanonry industrial estate between 17:00 on Thursday and 08:00 on Friday. Grampian Police said the stolen tyres were valued at nearly £7,000.

The force said there were a variety of makes and sizes, mainly for cars. Pc Mike Mulloy said: "The tyres were removed despite large boulders that were placed across the entrance of the premises.

"Whoever is responsible has gone to considerable effort to remove them and then carry off the tyres.

"It is believed that it would have required the use of a large vehicle, possibly a lorry.

"I am keen to hear from anyone who may have seen anything suspicious in the area during these times or who has been offered cheap tyres for sale."


Caravan show London 2012

The 2012 caravan show in London's Excel centre is in February. I have already seen a couple of caravans on the road, so it looks like this years mild winter will mean an early start to the season. If you are preparing your caravan for 2012, remember to check your tyres, as they could have deteriorated after sitting for a few months over the winter. For more advice on caravan tyre safety, have a look on the caravan clubs website.


Bentley Tyres

I have been busy fitting two tyres to a Bentley Continental where the customer had hit a Pothole and split two tyres on the same side. As part of the fitting we moved the tyres around to keep the two new tyres on the same rear axle and the two older tyres on the front. This vehicle was fitted with 19" tyres and has TPMS sensor valves incorporated in the wheels. This is something where special care has to be taken so as to not put any undue pressure on the sensor valves, as they can break quite easily.


Tyre Stretching (The Euro Look)

The BTMA is becoming increasingly concerned at the number of cars on British roads where the tyres fitted are too narrow for the wheel rim widths or conversely the wheel rims are too wide for the tyres. (Often referred to as the “Euro Look”) This trend is believed to be a fashion statement, but leads to serious risks in road safety.

All tyres are designed with an optimum wheel rim width, with an allowable tolerance either side of this e.g. Tyre Size: 205/55R16 Tyre Section width: 205mm Section H/W Ratio: 55% Rim Diameter code: 16 Optimum Rim Width code: 6.5 Permitted Rim Widths: 5.5 to 7.5

Tyre Size: 195/65R15 Tyre Section width: 195mm Section H/W Ratio: 65% Rim Diameter code: 15 Optimum Rim Width code: 6.0 Permitted Rim Widths: 5.5 to 7.0

Deviation from the permitted rim widths causes distortion in the tyre beyond its designed safe capability.

A tyre stretched onto a rim which is too wide, causes excessive distortion of the tyre sidewall. This is potentially very dangerous and could lead to a premature tyre failure. There is also a real risk of the tyre being easily dislodged from the wheel rim.

Consumers are urged to consult a tyre expert or the relevant tyre manufacturer before changing tyre and wheel sizes to ensure compatibility of the two components for the vehicle application.

Note: A change to the original vehicle specification could invalidate your motor insurance. Consult with your motor insurer prior to any vehicle modification.


2012 New Years Resolution

Make it your New Years Resolution for 2012 to check your car tyres both for tread and tyre pressure on a regular basis. A vehicle with at least 3mm of tread and correctly inflated tyres will have improved handling and stopping distances. During 2011 I replaced many tyres that were well passed their legal requirements and also many more that had less than half the amount of air pressure required. So for your safety in 2012 please look after your tyres, and should the tread be low, then give us a call at Hometyre as we can come to you at home or work to replace your tyres, at better than main dealer prices.


Blow out due to nail

Called out to a Motorcaravan with a blown out rear tyre. The cause had been a small nail that had punctured the tread, the driver didn't notice and continued to drive till it disintegrated. This is a good reason for installing a tyresure tyre pressure monitoring system. If interested call us at Hometyre, these systems can be installed in cars, vans, caravans, trailers or horseboxes. They have a dash mountable monitor that will warn you as soon as a tyre pressure changes by more than 3 psi (The 3 psi pressure change is adjustable to a setting you find suitable).


Back down on TPMS checks on MOT

VOSA were planning to do a big change on Tyre Pressure Monitoring Syatems (TPMS) by making them part of the MOT check from January 2012 for vehicles already fitted with them prior to this date. It was pointed out to VOSA that with some vehicles it is not possible to get replacement valves that will work with the monitor as they are obsolete (e.g. Rover 75). This would mean all of these vehicles with obsolete vales would fail the MOT, and would have to be scrapped as parts are not available to keep them on the road. VOSA have now seen sense and have said that any vehicle equipped with TPMS systems from the end of 2011, will have them checked in their MOT when they become due. They have also said that all new vehicles must have some form of TPMS system from Dec 2012. There is still a concern with the TPMS check, as it is possible to buy an aftermarker valve cap that includes a Pressure monitoring system, so in theory drivers could fit this to their cars just to get it through the MOT. I think that VOSA will have to look into this more clearly and come up with some strict rules, otherwise the MOT system will become a farce.


Tyre Pressure Monitoring Systems - Valves (TPMS)

Tyre Pressure Monitoring Systems - Valves (TPMS) Some vehicles namely, Lexus, Chrysler, Peugeot, Ford, Skoda and BMW have some form of tyre pressure sensor, there are two types (Indirect as used by BMW which uses the ABS system. Or direct systems which use a special sensor valve.) Hometyre only deal with the direct sensor valve types. These generally have a 5 to 7 year lifespan, at which point they fail to work and you get a warning light on your dash. We can replace these with original manufacturer parts at prices that beat most main dealers. From Late 2012 all new vehicles will have some form of pressure sensor fitted, and we have been informed that they will become part of the MOT system.


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