Nitrogen in Tyres Explained
While air may be extremely essential for our survival, it does not always prove to be the best choice in all cases. For instance, in case of potato chips, it is better to puff up the bags with nitrogen instead of air. This is because nitrogen in tyres prevents the chips from oxidizing and becoming a breeding ground for aerobic bacteria, thereby helping the chips to stay crisp and fresh for longer.
Likewise, in case of tyres, it is best to opt for nitrogen instead of ordinary air because the former offers a lot more benefits. If you would like your car wheels to have improved road grip, longer lifespan and offer better performance in all weathers then you should definitely put nitrogen in tyres.
Nitrogen is a non-toxic and non-flammable inert gas which is not capable of fusing with any other gas. Contrary to the popular notion, nitrogen itself is not the main factor benefiting the tyres, it is also the absence of damaging matters like water vapour, oxygen and noble gases in air.
Advantages of Nitrogen in Tyres
Because of its nature, it prevents the formation of moisture inside the tyres. This is an impressive quality because humidity in tyres is not favourable, irrespective of whether the water is present in the vapour form or the liquid form. In addition to stimulating temperature swings in the tyres, humidity also promotes the corrosion of the aluminium or steel rim of the wheels.
Another major advantage offered by nitrogen in tyres is that it is cooler than regular compressed air, which is why it keeps the wheels cool. This in turn reduces the wear and tear of the tyres due to lesser temperature. Tyres with lower temperature are also not very prone to bursting while being used for an extended period of time.
According to studies, nitrogen in tyres can help decrease the chances of the blowouts by ninety percent. This is one of the top reasons why people commuting long hours at high speeds on highways should fill their car tyres with nitrogen because it keeps the car and its passengers safe.
A disadvantage of Nitrogen in Tyres.
Nitrogen in tyres is a costlier affair in comparison to inflating them with regular air. It is a common misconception that using air in case of tyres is more or less the same thing as filling nitrogen. Air is made up of 78% nitrogen, 21% oxygen and the remaining 1% is composed of noble gases, water vapour and carbon dioxide. There is a world of difference between using 78% nitrogen in your tyres and inflating the tyres with 100% nitrogen.
Nitrogen in tyres allows your tire pressure to remain stable; in other words, the pressure in the tyres does not get affected by temperature swings. For racers, it is extremely important to have stable tyre pressure because the tyres heat up tremendously during races.
By keeping the pressure of the tyres stable, nitrogen in tyres also helps to increase fuel efficiency. It is a proven fact that correct tyre pressure can reduce the rolling resistance, which in turn contributes to the fuel efficiency of the vehicle.
When you put nitrogen in tyres, it will keep the patch of contact between the rolling tyre and the road optimum, which translates directly to better fuel economy and more savings on fuel. Also, nitrogen in tyres can help save you money because you will not need to get the tyres serviced or replaced often.
Nitrogen in tyres is not just used for vehicles and automobiles on land but it is also used in case of airplanes. Some aircrafts fly at heights wherein the temperature can drop as low as minus forty degree Celsius, which is why one cannot run the risk of using regular air for the tyres due to the moisture present in it.
Moisture in tyres at such temperatures would freeze and cause vibrations in the wheels while in flight. Also, the moisture inside the tyres would pose balance problems at the time of the plane’s landing. The best way to eliminate this problem is to use pure nitrogen in tyres.
Another common problem associated with tyres is air loss through the inner lining, valve, punctures or gaps caused by faulty sealing between the tyre and wheel rim. If you were to fill your tyres with regular air then the rate of air loss would be higher. In case of pure nitrogen, the rate of leakage is slower, this gives time to the individual to get the repair done. Nevertheless, this does not mean that one should ignore checking the tyre condition or pressure on a regular basis!
Nitrogen in Tyres for Racing.
Nitrogen is a very useful gas, it is not just used by a majority of the vehicle owners around the world but also by NASCAR or National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing, U.S. Government for commercial aircrafts and military use, food packagers and processors and so on.
Laymen can take advantage of nitrogen by filling their tyres with this useful gas. If you are contemplating the thought of replacing the air in your vehicle’s tyres with nitrogen because of these advantages then it is advisable to contact a professional.
There are many centres or car service centres that are even open on Sundays offering inflation of car tyres with nitrogen. In order to switch over to nitrogen it is necessary to completely remove the air present in the tyres and get them re-inflated with purified compressed nitrogen. Of course, the initial charge will be a bit high but it would be well worth it.
The good news is that future top-ups would be cheaper once you have replaced air with nitrogen for your car’s tyres. Keep in mind that in order to experience the benefits offered by nitrogen, it is essential to opt for at least 93.4% nitrogen purity. According to Bridgestone or Firestone researchers, the recommended percentage of nitrogen purity is between 93-98%.
All in all, nitrogen in tyres offer four main advantages: they save money, they increase safety, they offer better performance and they make the tyres low-maintenance – thus, what’s not to love about nitrogen in tyres?