Tyres are an all-important safety feature of any car. Whether you’re looking for a salvage car with a view to ultimately selling it on, or you’re buying one to drive it yourself, your tyres have a big effect on whether or not the car is in a driveable condition. While some people choose to simply change the tyres for newer models, some people view it as a great opportunity to upgrade to run-flat tyres. So, what exactly are run flat tyres, and should you consider buying them?
What are run flat tyres?
Essentially, run flat tyres are exactly what they sound like - letting your car continue moving even when you’ve got a flat tyre. Normally, a tyre puncture will bring your car to a complete halt, as it’ll severely affect your ability to drive it safely (or comfortably). Run flat tyres, on the other hand, are designed to give your car the bare minimum mobility it needs in order for you to get it to a garage to be repaired. The idea is that this saves you the prospect of standing around at the side of a road as you try and replace a flat tyre - especially since the sides of motorways can be extremely dangerous places for anyone on foot.
How do the run flat tyres work?
Normal tyres deform and lose their shape when they lose air pressure, which is what can cause your ride to become so uncomfortable and dangerous. On the other hand, run flat tyres are designed with a reinforced sidewall that helps them to keep their shape, so that they can support the car’s weight long enough for you to get it to a safe place for repairs.
You may be able to find run flat tyres that allow you to go as far as 50 miles at 50mph, which should be more than sufficient for you to get it out of a particularly dangerous or busy area. As you might expect, they’re connected to your car’s tyre pressure warning system to help you maintain vital awareness of their condition.
One of the main reasons why many people buy run-flat tyres is for the peace of mind they provide, but also even if you don’t end up using them (fingers crossed!), they can also help you improve your fuel efficiency, as you can go without the weight of an extra tyre in your boot.
But don’t forget…
Even when a run flat tyre is doing its job correctly, it’s important to remember that you still have to adjust your driving style accordingly, making sure you’re driving slowly and carefully. Plus, the specifications from various manufacturers can differ, and that can affect how fast and far their run flat tyres will be capable of travelling. For that reason alone, it’s always a good idea to do a bit of research before you buy!You’ll also probably find that most run flat tyres are more expensive than regular tyres, which makes sense given their relatively high tech nature.
If you do decide to buy, you’ll need to commit to having run flat tyres on all wheels of your car, not just one or two. They often handle differently to regular tyres, so mixing the two types can have noticeably adverse effects on your suspension. Finally, before you make the payment to buy your run flat tyres, it’s wise to be 100% certain that your car has a tyre pressure warning system. Otherwise, you may not find out that you’ve got a puncture until it’s too late, and that can end up seriously damaging the wheel.
So, those are the general points to bear in mind. As to whether run flat tyres are worth investing in for your own salvage car, though… well, we’ll let you be the judge! You’ll certainly find no shortage of choice when it comes to salvage cars here in our own online car auctions at RAW2K. We’ve got makes and models from the likes of Mercedes, Peugeot, Renault, and many more. Why not take a look around, and see what you can find?