Monday, October 3, 2011

Simple Survival Tools - The Tire Pressure Gauge



Even the simplest of tools can be critical to your survival and are often overlooked until it’s too late to avoid a simple but almost certain disaster. Our daily survival often depends upon our means of transportation and without some due diligence on our part we may end up going nowhere fast. We can fall victim to our own neglect and a failure to do one of the simplest of things can lead to a disaster of our own making. The tire pressure gauge is a tool that can help you avoid one of the most common disasters that are faced by hundreds of people each day.

Small, inexpensive and compact they are an indispensable item. They allow you keep your tires properly inflated and help you to avoid excessive wear on your vehicle’s tires. New tires aren’t cheap and you need to get the most value and use of the ones you have already. They can also warn you if you’ve got a slow leak in a tire before it becomes the flat that leaves you stranded in the middle of nowhere. A tire pressure gauge can also help you avoid the “I didn’t know the spare tire was flat.” disaster that seems to catch people unaware and they realize that a bad situation has just gotten a lot worse.  

It takes a lot less time to check the air pressure in the tires of your vehicle on a regular basis than it does to wait for a tow truck or for someone to bring you an air tank. This is a habit that should be a part of your regular routine. There are enough disasters out there without adding ones of our own making, especially ones that can be easily avoided.

Probably the easiest way to fit this into your routine is to make it a part of another routine act that is performed on a regular basis. Simply take the time to check your tires when you gas up. You’re already stopped and it takes a while to fill the tank. So spend a little extra time and use that tire pressure gauge to check your tires and the spare as well. They’re cheap enough that you can keep one in every vehicle.

Otherwise, you may end up going nowhere fast!

Checked the spare tire on your BOV lately?

Staying above the water line!

Riverwalker

8 comments:

jambaloney said...

i agree completely - often overlooked - mine is always in the driver-side door shelf of the f150..

i keep a 12v compressor under the seat for good measure

good post!

Shreela said...

I'll never bug-out (evacuate a hurricane) with only one spare after suffering two blowouts during Rita-evac. And we had an extra small tire, just didn't think that 2 spares might be needed.

I'm going to check our pressure when he comes home from work, thanks!

Josh said...

This is a good and possibly overlooked tip to a lot of people. I carry a small dial gauge with a straight chuck on it because it seems like it would be more accurate than the $1.50 straight gauges you get at the gas station. I've heard numerous times that the digital ones are best though.

The 12V air compressor is a good idea too, and can be had pretty cheap. I bought one several years ago from Wal-Mart when in college. I came outside one morning to find I had a flat and Wal-Mart was the only place within walking distance from my apartment. It was only $30 or $40 dollars, so I might consider investing in something more heavy duty at some point, but I’ve used it several times and it’s always worked beautifully.

In conjunction with the compressor, I would also suggest carrying and learning to use a tire plug kit. Growing up on a farm it was not a rare occurrence to have to plug a vehicle tire that ran over a nail, or a four-wheeler tire that was punctured by a thorn from a locust tree. You should already be carrying pliers or a multitool, so if you ran over a nail you’ll be able to pull it out, ream the hole, put in a plug and pump your tire back up. And if you really want to be high-speed, you could carry a small propane torch in the trunk to help melt the plug into the tread. (They also work as a great way to cheat at getting a campfire going, and that’s the main reason there’s one in my trunk!)

millenniumfly said...

You're absolutely right. Unfortunately, it also takes an individual to use the gauge, something I haven't been able to get the Mrs. to do yet. :)

riverwalker said...

To: jambaloney

I've got the little 12 volt portable air compressors also. Still. it's important to check your tire pressure...helps with the gas mileage and cuts down on the wear and tear on your tires.

Thanks jambaloney

RW

riverwalker said...

To: Shreela

Been there and done that. If you don't have a cell phone handy, get ready to do a little walking.

I can remeber when cell phones didn't exist and if you weren't prepared it could be a long wait (or walk) depending upon the circumstances.

Thanks Shreela.

RW

riverwalker said...

To: Josh

Great reminder about the tire plugs...could be extremely helpful in a bad situation.

And the propane torch firestarter...should work great for sealing the plugs and burning most anything else! lol

Thanks for the tips.

RW

riverwalker said...

To: milleniumfly

Mrs. RW likes to hand me the tire pressure gauge when I get out to gas up the truck but if I'm not with her she'll grab the air hose and get it done. She's even fixed flats on the lawn mower if I'm not around (after some instruction on my part).

Thanks.

RW

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