Winter will soon be here and colder temperatures will impact the performance of your aircraft – including tire pressure. Hence, a recent post about tire pressure by John Fiscus (the Flight Academy’s Chief Pilot) on the Cirrus Owners & Pilots Association (COPA) blog is will worth reading.
As John reminds us, its important to keep track of tire pressure because low pressure can have bad side effects such as excessive tread wear to loss of control during landings. And although the wheels may be hard to see, John also reminds us that they are not so hard to see when you get down close to the pavement and this is also a good time to check the white stickers on the brakes.
However, since it can also be hard to tell from simply looking at the tires that the pressure is too low, John gives the following helpful suggestion:
Make sure you’ve parked near where the air in your tires can be filled (many portable tanks won’t do this too well) and, using a pressure gage, release the pressure in one of the main gear down to about 30 or 25 psi. Now fill the pressure back up to 62psi in SR22s and 53psi in SR20s. You should be able to notice the difference quickly, a very significant bulge will be evident when the pressure is low.
In addition, John also suggests a second method that requires a bit more work because it involves fitting a block of wood under a fairing when the tires are properly inflated.
Regardless of what method you use though, keeping track of your tire pressure is a relatively easy thing to do that will also keep you safe the next time you fly.