With Easter upon us I thought I'd link it to a bit of topical information about tyre damage. Of course when you live in a city you are more aware of what goes on in it than you are in others but one of the most common comments I hear from customers is that Edinburgh has more than it's fair share of potholes than anywhere else. Right or wrong there is certainly a plague of the little devils inflicting irreparable damage to Edinburgh tyres. For many this manifests itself as instant deflation due to a tear in the sidewall whilst others may remain mobile with a less immobilising but equally as terminal condition commonly referred to as an "egg" in the sidewall.
The bulge is commonly the size and shape of the top of an egg and is where structural damage has occurred to the tyre and it's strength has been compromised. Don't be fooled just because the rubber looks intact and there is no puncture, this is terminal for the tyre and more sinisterly can be lurking in that dark and unseen world of the inner sidewall or the side of the tyre that faces in to the car.
One thing's for sure, these "eggs' on your tyres have compromised it's safety and should be replaced without delay. The bulge is a symptom of the breakdown of the structural integrity of the internals of the tyre which is where it's reinforcement and strength comes from. The tyre is struggling to maintain the pressure of the air contained within and just a touch from a kerb or further impact from another pothole could well be enough to cause it to give way immediately.
Further to this, whilst driving, the air pressure within a tyre increases due to the generation of heat from the friction created between the tyre and the road, this increase in pressure maybe more than the compromised tyre can handle and ultimately ends in a blow out which, when driving at speed, can have serious consequences.
So in the run up to Easter spend a little time and have your own egg hunt and give your tyres the once not forgetting to check the inner sidewall. If you are unsure just give us a call for some advice and if necessary we can arrange to come around to give you a free tyre inspection. Our mobile tyre service covers Edinburgh, Lothian and Borders so no matter where you are across the region, peace of mind and convenience is literally on your doorstep.
Winter Tyres Still Proving Popular
With some temperature fluctuations predicted and the prospect of a White Christmas diminishing with the predicted "warm" front moving in this week there has been no abatement in the demand for winter tyres across the UK and even without the snow in the Edinburgh, Lothian and borders region it seems many people are playing safe and ensuring their vehicles are equipped to deal with the low temperatures this time of year. Certainly last week there was a significant uplift in their demand and I fitted quite a few sets.
It's not just in snow that you'll find winter tyres are going to improve your car's handling, if you are driving on summer tyres then every degree that the temperature drops below 7°C their performance is compromised whereas if you had winter tyres, below that temperature they are performing at their best.
Winter tyres are an investment but they will extend the life of your summer tyres and, most importantly, the rubber compound and tread design will be working better to keep you safe over the cold and damp winter season.
The main thing is that you take a little extra time to check your tyres out as whilst they may have been alright over the summer it's just quite possible that they may be struggling in the damp slippery conditions that currently prevail and a new set might be in order. If that is the case give us a call and we can discuss your options and we'll ensure you get the tyre that not only suits your demands but suits your pocket as well and as always we'll come to you and fit them at a time and place most convenient for you.
Correct Wheel Alignment. It Won't Change Your Life But.......
I had the pleasure of attending (on separate occasions) 2 vehicles in Penicuik, Midlothian over the last week to fit new tyres and check and correct their wheel alignment. A Citroen C5 had it's 2 front tyres worn down to the chords on both inner shoulders so clearly something out of kilter there and then a Ford Focus had it's driver having to hold the steering wheel off centre in order to drive straight. In addition, the Citroen's driver said the car felt very unstable when driving at speeds in excess of 40mph on open roads.
Once the new tyres were fitted both cars received a free alignment check using our industry leading laser Supertracker system and, unsurprisingly, they were measuring considerably adverse to their target setting.
Because both jobs were being carried out on the customers' driveways, not the Health & Safety hazard of a commercial garage, I was able to let them see and talk them through the results of the check which put them in an informed position to help make a decision on how to proceed.
After carrying out the necessary correction work to get the vehicles back "on track" both owners took their cars out for a test drive and upon return their smiles were beaming. Now clearly this wasn't going to be a life changing event but after considerable time for them both combatting their vehicle's misalignment and now experiencing it driving straight, true and more stable the pleasure of driving had been restored. Add to that the fact that their tyres are now more likely to get a longer life and better fuel consumption due to reduced friction it really was a positive result all round.
We're Well In the Zone for Winter Tyres
Less than a month to go until mid-winter and it would be easy to think it's probably too late for those winter tyres you've been umm-ing and aah-ing about since the nights drew in and the tee shirts we're packed away. Well trust me it's not too late.
The average temperature across Edinburgh for the last week has been just +5ºC and you can bet the further outreaches of East, Mid and West Lothian it has been less. Below +7ºC regular (non-winter) tyres loose their effectiveness and winter tyres come into their own.
We have a comprehensive range of winter tyres available to suit all budgets so give us a call to discuss your seasonal tyre options. If you already have a set of winter tyres and have still to get them fitted, take the convenient option and book a home fitting through Hometyre.
No Tread Sensors Just Yet
Technology in cars is progressing at breakneck speed, sensors and systems monitor what's happening not just inside your car's engine and drivetrain but many vehicles now have their own spatial awareness and know exactly what's around them and can alert you of impending dangers even before the driver realises they are there.
Tyres have recently been the beneficiary of the development of monitoring systems and every new vehicle must be fitted with a system that monitors tyre pressures and alerts the driver to any variation. Whilst these systems have come along in leaps and bounds in recent years, there has yet to be a system installed in cars that can monitor tyre tread depth. Devices do exist that can examine the condition of a car's tyre tread, but at the moment they are hand held and as such requires a user to scan them over the tyre and they are rather pricey, but safe to say there's no system available that will continually monitor tyre tread condition and warn of an impending change or danger.
Suffice to say for the time being checking your tread depth is something that will continue to be done visually and the only technology you may need to use may be a torch, mirror and a device, such as a 20p coin that can confirm tread depth.
It will require crouching down if you're going to do it properly, a procedure one of my customers in Bonnyrigg, Midlothian hadn't executed fully, much to his misfortune, as the rubber on the inner shoulder of the tyre had worn so much that the reinforcement chords were the only part of that portion of the tyre in contact with the road and, trust me these have no grip and are certainly not airtight. Totally oblivious to this fact, the driver had assumed it was just a routine puncture but on my arrival an initial tyre inspection revealed the Ford Fiesta would be needing a new 205/40/17 tyre as clearly repair was not an option. The good news for this particular driver is we could get him back on the road within an hour with a full tyre report and a recommendation for a further change on the opposite tyre due to the same symptoms.
So until the tyre tread monitoring system is a standard fixture on cars I would recommend a monthly inspection making sure you cover the full width of the tyre, putting the front wheels on full lock will help you get a look at that crucial hidden inner portion. If in any doubt about the roadworthiness of your tyres, give us a call and if necessary we can book in a free tyre inspection and we'll come to you to give you our professional advice.
Rural Tyre Change for a Stable Hand
Looking after horses requires commitment and dedication, looking after a number of horses belonging to other people requires not only the aforementioned but a lot of hard work. I had the pleasure of visiting a Livery Yard in East Lothian to replace two 155/75/14s on a Citroen C1 for the manager of a stables whose early start for the horses and subsequent second job later in the day meant that time to go and get some much needed tyres was not only difficult but downright inconvenient.
We were out in the rural location on a wet and gloomy morning, the two tired and worn tyres were replaced, rotated front to rear for safety and the little Citroen's tyre health was restored and all the equine duties were completed (the latter not by me I must add) as our mobile service delivers the ultimate in convenient and hassle free tyre replacement.
The TPMS Saga Continues Apace
Last week saw issues with electronic tyre pressure monitoring system valves temporarily disable two car owners vehicles. The issues were temporary because a quick call to Hometyre and we were able to attend both customers, one at home the other at work, diagnose the source of their problems and rectify immediately with minimum fuss and inconvenience and, you can be pretty sure, at a considerable cost saving over the main dealer.
The first customer had a Kia Piccanto in Slateford, Edinburgh who had topped up their tyres with air at a local petrol station and on removing the air hose had inadvertently bent and broken two valve stems.
In this case we were able to replace just the stems on both the affected wheels.
The second car was a Mazda 6 in Tranent, East Lothian where the customer's electronic valve had succumbed to corrosion, the top of the valve had began to crumble and the valve core had also stuck as a result of the corrosion, similar to that in the image below.
Unfortunately in this case the stem was an integral part of the unit so it required the replacement of the electronic sender unit which has the valve stem permanently fitted. We were able to supply a new complete valve assembly and programme the new sender unit on site.
So far I have yet to come across a Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) valve issue I have been unable to resolve, so if your electronic valves are corroded, broken or just simply not working, visit our website for more information and give us a call on 0333 444 5454
Electronic (TPMS) Valve Rescue
Tyre Pressure Monitoring System valves have stopped a couple of my customers in their tracks over the last couple of weeks. For most car owner these devices will function quite happily in your wheel, monitoring the tyre pressure and alerting the driver should there be a drop in pressure, for an unfortunate few, however, when these malfunction or break, the results can, quite literally, bring you to a grinding halt.
Electronic failure, be it through a low battery or a faulty circuit, can be managed temporarily by taking a manual reading of the tyre pressure with a gauge at the valve, correcting if necessary, then proceeding your journey with caution. A call to us and we can attend your vehicle and replace the valve and electronic unit and your tyre pressure monitoring system will be functioning like new in no time.
Structural failure, usually caused by a snapped and/or corroded valve stem is normally more disabling as it is unlikely that you will be able to get any air to stay in the tyre. A Jaguar owner in Edinburgh had a similar situation last week in that they suspected they had a puncture and called us out to assist them based on that premise. On arrival a leak test discovered that the valve stem had broken about half way up and was leaking air from there rather than a problem with the tyre. As we are equipped to deal with all issues relating to tyres we were able to programme and fit a new valve there and then which ensured the system was restored to full functionality and all at a considerable saving over a main dealer without the hassle of having to take the vehicle into to a garage to have the necessary repairs carried out.
Caravan Season Has Arrived
Just hooking up and hiding off after the winter layoff is not recommended and fortunately most caravan owners are discerning enough that they complete a thorough inspection before the first trip of the year. Age as much as distance takes it's toll on caravan tyres so make sure you cast a detailed eye over them when completing your annual check and if you have any concerns or doubts give us a call and take advantage of our free inspection service and what's more your caravan won't even have to turn a wheel as we come to you and can give you our expert opinion on site at your home or wherever your caravan is stored.
There has been a notable uplift in caravan tyre fitting across Edinburgh, Lothian and Borders over the last couple of weeks including one owner with a brand new caravan having Tyron Bands supplied and fitted by us.
Give us a call on 0333 444 5454 or visit our website hometyre.co.uk and see how we can help you with all your caravan and trailer tyre needs.
One Phone Call is All it Takes
Sunny Edinburgh New Town was my destination at lunchtime yesterday, unfortunately for me it was not in one of the many fine restaurants for an alfresco lunch but it was a pleasant encounter with a dutiful father whose daughter had had an unplanned coming together with a kerb on her way to college. Dad stepped in, let his daughter get on with her studies whilst he sorted out getting the stricken Fiat 500 back on the road.
Within minutes of the phone call to us we were winging our way to the suppliers to procure a 185/55/15 tyre in order to restore the little car back to roadworthiness. We were with the driver's father in no time at all and within 30 minutes of our arrival in Edinburgh City centre the Fiat was ready, fitted with a new tyre, just in time for college finishing.
Chatting with the father he had initially envisaged having to call and wait for a breakdown truck to then in turn transfer him to a garage to then have to wait to get a tyre fitted then have to go back to pick his daughter up and take her back to the car (if the tyre shop/garage was fortunate to have the tyre in stock). I'm sure you'll agree that last bit would have been a tedious, logistical nightmare , even just to read let alone carry out. Fortunately by using our services, one phone call is all it took and the car was back in working order without it having to move and in considerably less time than using a breakdown service.
For the most convenient solution to tyre replacement get in touch and remove the usual disruption of having to go to a garage.
A Welcome Sight for a Commuter
A last minute call out last night to Musselburgh Train Station where a flat tyre had brought a commuter's journey home to an abrupt halt. Armed with a replacement 205/55/16 tyre for the stricken Audi A4, I managed to be on site within 10 minutes of first contact.
On arrival the driver had already sought assistance from a friend who looked on in despair as the threads for the wheel nuts had apparently "disappeared". Calm was quickly restored as a quick inspection from myself assured them not to worry, the brake disc retaining screw was missing and the wheel hub had simply turned within the disc when the wheel nuts were removed so with just a turn of the hub whilst holding the disc, the threads were back in line with the corresponding holes in the disc.
Further good news for the customer followed when I inspected the tyre and found it to be a repairable puncture which would restore their homeward bound journey in about half an hour.
The relief was palpable as our puncture repair charges saved money for the customer over a new tyre and was a welcome relief as they were expecting to have to organise a breakdown recovery truck which, as we all know, normally comes with a sizeable cost if you're not a member of a roadside assistance organisation.
Whether You Call it Tracking or Wheel Alignment, We Can Help
Well after spending the weekend meeting some great people at the Ingliston Revival Festival it was back to the normal day job last Monday. Aside from fitting tyres I was in Penicuik carrying out Wheel Alignment on a Ford Transit Luton Van. Some major corrections were required to the steering geometry after a local garage had recently fitted new new track rod ends but unfortunately they didn't have the equipment to carry out proper alignment for their customer. Within a short period of time they had worn through a set of front tyres and after fitting a new set they called us in order to prevent them going the same way. With our Supertracker 4-wheel laser alignment system we were able to set up the vehicle to the manufacturer's specifications and ensure the new tyres and their vehicle have a long and happy relationship.
A Premium Service at a Competitve Price
I had the unfortunate experience the other day of one of my domestic appliances breaking down on me and whilst I consider myself an expert in my field, when it comes to white goods, even my wife has more technical knowledge than me (what clothing goes at what temperature in the washing machine is a mystery to me). Anyway suffice to say I had to call someone in to repair it. The local technician who attended was very competent and professional, whilst being reasonably priced and to be honest I would have no hesitation in recommending him. I ask you to bear with me as there is a point in these meanderings. The cost of the service was £40 simply for attending the job, then £40 per hour (minimum 1 hour charge) plus parts and then add on VAT. It does annoy me when clearly as a domestic customer I don't get quoted the price including VAT as ultimately I have no choice to pay it or claim it back. So before any work is carried out it's going to cost me at least £90. Now I am not about to be detrimental to the business that i used, quite the opposite as they carried out the job to a high standard at a competitive price
Anyway, it got me thinking in terms of what we at Hometyre deliver to our customers and the price we charge. In terms of a service with minimal material cost, for a puncture repair (so no tyre cost involved) we will attend your preferred location and carry out the repair to the affected tyre, inspect all the other tyres on the vehicle, ensure they are in a roadworthy condition and inflate to specified pressure all for the current price of £36 (and yes that does include VAT). This price is standard regardless of distance across the Edinburgh, Lothian and Borders area. So you may be in Whitburn, North Berwick, Peebles or the centre of Edinburgh the charge is the same. The same applies to having new tyres supplied and fitted, there is no call out charge and you will find our prices are extremely competitive and in many cases are better than those you will find at a garage or tyre fitting centre.
To further help our customers save money we have lowered our prices on tyres across our range so visit our website or give us a call and find out how cost effective having Hometyre take care of all your tyre needs will be. Add the convenience of you not having to drive to and waste time at a garage the choice to use us is simple. In fact the hardest decision you'll have to make is which tyre, from our massive range, you would like to have fitted, but don't worry we are here to help you make the decision that is best for you.
Don't Get Caught Out
With the holiday season almost here it's only natural to get caught up in the festive mood and it's a time when we put our physical, mental and financial resources into making the Christmas period one to remember for our nearest and dearest and, of course, ourselves. With all this going on it's easy to forget the less seasonally themed important things in life and keeping yourself safe and equipped for the road is probably down your list of priorities until you get caught out and your tyres either fail to perform, or maybe get flagged up by the law enforcement authorities in a winter safety check.
The best cure is prevention so before you start shopping for the turkey, stuffing ingredients, mince pies and mulled wine, give your tyres the once over. The chances are you'll be fine but I have come to the aid of many a motorist who has been caught out by the failure of a worn out tyre of which they were blissfully unaware because they hadn't completed a simple visual check.
Here at Hometyre we are on hand across the Edinburgh, Lothians and Borders region to help you out in times of tyre trouble. Mobile tyre replacement is not only the most convenient, cost-effective and hassle free way to replace your tyres but because we come to you, you won't have to sit around in the tyre fitting bay wasting valuable Christmas preparation time, you can get on with making those mince pies whilst we take of your tyre replacement. We don't have blue lights so we're not an emergency service but rest assured we will always do our best to help our customers in time of (tyre) difficulty. One phone call or a visit our website is all it takes so you don't get caught out over the festive period. Click on this link http://www.hometyre.co.uk/news/holiday-period-opening-hours/ to find out when our Sales Team are available to take your call over Christmas and New Year. Have a Happy and Safe Christmas
Make Tyre Checks a Routine
There was a time, in the not too distant past, when the majority of motorists used to have to complete regular and frequent checks to their cars in order to keep them in good working order. These checks would be as frequent as weekly and, if not completed, could result in lubrication points on suspension and steering for example running out of grease and significantly increased probability of excess wear and failure. This is a real contrast to modern cars where in many cases manufacturers don't need to see your car for servicing until you have completed 20,000 miles. Advances in manufacturing and technology have made components last longer, needing less attention from their owners and making today's vehicles much more reliable.
For convenience this is great for motorists but the downside is that we have become increasingly detached from potential failures and dangers on our vehicles. The only input many of us have into the running of our vehicles is filling up with diesel or petrol and the occasional top up of the washer bottle. Unfortunately one of the simplest but most effective checks for ensuring your safety is sadly neglected as our vehicles become pillars of reliability, that check is the condition of our tyres. There is no specialist equipment required, can be completed in a matter of minutes and will contribute so much more to the well being and safety of yourself, your passengers and other road users than say, choosing between regular and super unleaded petrol for example, ever will but we will almost certainly spend less time doing the aforementioned.
Turn your front wheels onto full lock to enable you to get a good look at the full width of tyres.
Those little square rectangles within the grooves are tread depth indicators which, to ensure you remain legal, act as a guide by indicating when the tread on the tyre reaches 2mm by sitting flush with the top of your tread at that critical point. This, however, should not be your only point of reference when completing your inspection, check the tread over the complete width of the tyre as it is not uncommon for the tyre to have sufficient tread depth across the centre but for the outer or inner "shoulder" of the tyre to be completely worn through. This situation can and will seriously compromise your tyres' ability to displace water and can lead to loss of control in wet conditions. The 20p piece check is one that is commonly recommended as a good guide. Simply insert the edge of a 20p coin into the tread grooves and use the border as a guide to suitability of tread depth.
The border of the coin that contains the inscription is 3mm, if any part of the border can be seen above the groove then your tyre is over 78% worn and it's performance is significantly reduced and replacement should be considered. In addition complete a visual check of the general condition of the rubber both across the tread and the sidewall. Check for cracks, tears, rips, bulges and objects embedded in the tyre. If in doubt give us a call as we can arrange a suitable time to complete a comprehensive tyre inspection for you
As I mentioned earlier, these simple checks can be completed without any equipment and by any motorist at home without having to wait until you put your car goes in for it's service. By doing this you then have the ability, if they need replacing, to do so without feeling obliged to get them done by the main dealer/garage completing the routine service. Being without your vehicle whilst it is in the garage for servicing and indeed tyre replacement is both inconvenient and time consuming. Fortunately help is on hand for the latter, as Hometyre can deliver a fully mobile tyre fitting service and are offering motorists throughout Edinburgh, Midlothian, East Lothian, West Lothian and the Scottish Borders a real cost effective alternative to taking your vehicle in to a garage to have it's tyres replaced.
Our vans are fully equipped to complete tyre replacement without any compromise on quality or service and in reality as the service is one to one you, as our customer, have our undivided attention.
Give us a call or visit our website and find out how much of those valuable commodities of time and money you can save by having you tyres fitted using our mobile fitting operation and find out what all of our increasing band of loyal customers have discovered, that Hometyre really is the future of tyre replacement.
Locking Wheel Nut Woes?
If you lived through the 80s then a car sitting on bricks minus it's prized and, at that time, rare alloy wheels was a relatively frequent sight. Prior to this time even luxury cars would come with steel wheels and depending on the level of trim a set of plain or fancy wheel trims. This began to change in the early 80s when vehicle manufacturers began to offer alloy wheels as a chargeable option, not just on top of the range models, but even on a small hatchback.
To try and combat the alloy wheel thieves and protect car owner's investments, manufacturers and dealers started to fit their cars with the now common place locking wheel nut which required a specifically patterned "key" to enable it's removal.
The effectiveness of this idea was such that just about every car fitted with alloy wheels now comes with locking wheel nuts as standard and it's success is pretty evident in that a car up on bricks is now an extremely rare site on our streets. Of course the other point of view is that so many cars now come with alloy wheels that they are no longer as desirable to thieves.
There is (isn't there always?) a downside to these cunning alloy wheel thief thwarters, the keys used to remove them can be prone to failure and you normally find out at the most inconvenient time possible. The actual nut itself normally has hardened steel used in it's construction to prevent their easy removal without the key, the key however tends to be made of a softer metal that doesn't stand up well to frequent use and, particularly, to being over torqued.
So the bad news is that they can be prone to failure, the good news is that Hometyre offer a mobile service where we can come to you and help you out with a solution at the time when you need it the most. We use tooling which invariably leaves no or minimal signs of the work carried out, has an excellent success rate and provides you with a service that has a considerably less lead time than trying to source a replacement key, for which yours will be one of a myriad of possible patterns that may apply to your car.
Just last week I was called to Edinburgh Airport to help out a car rental company who had three cars where previous customers had lost the locking wheel nut keys. This had rendered the vehicles unsuitable for rental reducing the company's available fleet and incurring car park charges whilst the cars sat idle. With a considerable amount of patience, determination and of course the extensive tooling we carry on our vans, twelve removed locking wheel nuts later, the rental company had three vehicles back on fleet and a considerably reduced car park bill.
It maybe as simple as one locking nut or, like the above customer, a number of vehicles that require their locking nuts removed, don't despair there is a solution across the Edinburgh, Lothian and Borders region with the added convenience that we come to you eliminating that all too daunting prospect of a costly visit to the garage. You will find our prices competitive and in most cases cheaper than a garage, one of my customers was quoted £200 per hour by a main dealer for locking nut removal, we could probably complete the whole job for less than half that cost.
Give us a call to discuss your needs then sit back and relax as we will take care of the rest.
The Mercury's Dropped and Road Conditions Have Changed.
Forward, reverse, left, right and most importantly....STOP! The final execution of all those manoeuvres in your car rests entirely on your tyres. The hard facts are that if your tyres aren't up to the job, your ability to complete any of the aforementioned moves will be severely compromised. Without wishing to understate the importance of the condition of your tyres outside the current season, you can be certain that, as the temperature drops, the roads are damp and slippery and winter makes it's presence felt, anything other than a set of tyres in good condition will be found out.
The ideal solution is to get a set of winter tyres fitted for the simple and undeniable fact that they are specifically designed to cope with the conditions we experience this time of year. The same way as you wouldn't (sensibly) wear a pair of flip-flops to walk down the street in the depths of winter it would be unreasonable to expect a set of tyres to perform across such a differing range of conditions as we experience in mid-summer as those in mid-winter, particularly when you take into consideration the speeds it is possible to achieve in a modern motor vehicle.
Of course a set a winter tyres does present an initial financial outlay but by using them over the winter months and refitting your summer tyres in the warmer months it can be possible to extend their life by up to double as the miles travelled on each pair is spread across your two sets.
The rubber compound of winter tyres becomes more effective than summer tyres at temperatures of 7˚C and below. Here in the UK we are well used to t-shirts one day and overcoats the next so it's quite possible that temperatures will rise above 7˚C before the clocks go forward, but I can pretty much guarantee that we will be languishing in the lower levels of the thermometer gauge more than we will be close to the double figures so the sensible choice to cope with the overwhelming majority of the coming season's weather is winter tyres.
The good news for motorists across Edinburgh. Lothians and Borders is that here at Hometyre winter tyres are a speciality. A comprehensive choice of brands across all price ranges is available to you and with one phone call or visit to our website it can all be arranged, then all you need to do is sit back as we make our way to you at home or work confident in the knowledge that you're tyres will be ready for the worst the winter weather can throw at you.
Tyre replacement for South-East Scotland had never been easier, from Whitburn to Eyemouth, South Queensferry to Galashiels, we are here to take the stress out of getting tyres fitted. So if it's winter or summer tyres , puncture repairs or wheel alignment, our mobile service is here for you, check out our website hometyre.co.uk or give us a call on 0333 444 5454.
A Varied Couple of Weeks
Summer arrives early and somewhat fleetingly for us up here North of the Border and we get a couple of weeks head start on the rest of the UK when it comes to summer vacation, that also means we have to get over our summer hangover a similar time before the rest of them as well and the last couple of weeks has brought a busy and varied number of situations that we Hometyre have been uniquely positioned to resolve.
Whilst passing through Musselburgh the other day my route took me past the Racecourse on race day where there was a number of Private Hire Taxis outside awaiting passengers to exit after the final race. One of the drivers of the aforementioned taxis noticed the distinctive Hometyre livery on the van some distance up the road and promptly proceeded, with some enthusiasm, to flag me down to see if I could assist him with a locking wheel nut problem.
Upon inspection of the driver's side front wheel, there had been some previous and somewhat destructive attempts made to remove the offending item with no success.
The issue, as with many of these type of situations, had been the over tightening of the locking wheel nut which meant on trying to remove it the "key' was unable to gain sufficient purchase to turn it and it had ultimately broken. Over tightening can defeat even the most determined of mechanics/technicians upon which point they tend to resort to destruction in order to remove. At Hometyre we never let frustration overcome determination and after expending considerable time and effort, determination and a desire to succeed enabled me to remove the locking wheel nut.
The result of the over tightening had been the failure of the wheel bolt to grip the wheel hub as the splines on the head of the bolt had been "smoothed off" in it's initial tightening and the subsequent removal attempts. To leave the bolt in place without a nut on the end would have meant it would have been loose and possibly foul the brake calliper, disc or other equally vital component. Fortunately due to the comprehensive tooling I carry on board I was able to cut the bolt off allowing the vehicle and it's owner to travel onward to it's base. 2 days later I attended the owners house to fit a new tyre to replace the worn out one which could not be removed previously as the locking wheel nut had prevented it.
With over a 90% success rate across, not just within the Edinburgh and Lothians region but across our network, our locking wheel nut removal service is able to help the majority of motorists who have issues with broken or failed keys and is a lifeline where this is preventing the removal and replacement of punctured or worn out tyres.
Some August Highlights
The weather across Edinburgh and the Lothians has been,as usual for this time of year, somewhat variable over August which keeps our Festival goers guessing as to what to wear on a daily basis.
Whatever weather we are experiencing Hometyre Edinburgh has been busy across the region looking after the tyre needs of visitors and residents alike.
The discerning caravan owner is now pretty much set for a summer of touring with, hopefully, a suitable set of tyres on their travelling home but don't forget we are still here to help you out with in the unfortunate eventuality of a puncture.
For our car owners we have been attending events from a simple (but inconvenient) puncture repair to a Mini for a Fringe Festival visitor who was greeted with a flat tyre before their long journey back to South West England to a local office worker taking advantage of our both convenient and comprehensive range of services by having "the works" (a bead refurbishment, a puncture repair, a new tyre supplied and fitted and a wheel alignment check). Both of these customers benefitted from the fact that they didn't have to leave their location to get any of this done, the festival visitor had the work carried out at their holiday accommodation and the office worker had it done in the car park at work.
Our Locking Wheel Nut Removal Service continues to be both popular and, in my experience, one of the most successful in the business borne out by this recent event. I had completed a tyre replacement at a local commercial garage in Penicuik and on completion the owner of the establishment asked if i could look at a vehicle where the locking wheel nut key had failed. Both his garage and another sizeable, long established and respected garage in Penicuik had attempted to remove them to no avail. Always one for a challenge I had a go and within 20 minutes had all the locking wheel nuts removed. Unfortunately in the previous attempts to remove them, the locking nuts had been distorted and the alloys had suffered some damage in their "enthusiasm" to remove them, had they called us first the likelihood of the damage would have been drastically reduced and 2 garage visits would have been unnecessary.
So a quick snapshot of some of our activities across the region to give you a taster of what we can do and it's not just in Edinburgh and it's close neighbouring towns we serve, among those we cover are Whitburn, Livingston, Bathgate, North Berwick, Dunbar, Haddington, Pathhead, Gorebridge, Peebles, in fact we cover the majority of the Lothian and Borders region.
Give us a call on 0333 444 5454 or visit our website hometyre.co.uk and find out he we can bring convenience and first class service to your tyre needs.
Additional Benefits of a Front to Rear SwapFor many of my customers the subject of swapping their old tyres to the front and the new tyres being fitted to the rear comes as both a surprise and, after discussion, common sense in equal measure. The reasons for doing the front to rear swap are well documented and a search on the internet will show many respected motoring authorities covering this subject and endorsing carrying out this operation and I will always discuss it with you before proceeding. For two of my recent Edinburgh based customers both have benefited from the opportunity it gives me as a tyre technician and the customer as the vehicle owner to give the tyres a really thorough inspection, more so than if the tyres were inspected on the car. The two customers in question both had sharp foreign objects imbedded in the tyres that were to remain on the car. One had a nail that had penetrated right through the tyre and was, albeit very slowly, leaking air. The other had a sharp piece of metal that was sitting in the groove of the tread of the tyre which had penetrated down to the steel belted radial but not through the inner skin but further tyre wear would have put pressure on the object and a puncture would've been inevitable. Thankfully both because we had removed these wheels off the car the offending objects were removed, necessary repairs carried out and, at the very least, an inconvenient roadside puncture sometime in the future averted. As well as a good inspection I also checked and rectified, where necessary, the tyre pressures and ensured the the wheels were balanced to ensure smooth motoring and prolonging tyre life all carried at the customer's home.
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