News

20th November 2018
Donít let your tyres run Black Friday off the road

 

Over the last few years, Black Friday has become one of the most important dates in the retail calendar. In 2017 alone, £1.4bn of online sales were recorded over this period in the UK; an impressive figure, but one that was itself an increase of 11.7% on 2016’s result.

With the sales just a few days away, retailers will be bracing themselves for the incoming barrage of orders, but they aren’t the only ones. It’s sure to be one of the busiest periods of the year for delivery drivers, too.

While fleet managers will be scrambling to ensure that they have enough drivers and vehicles available to meet the demand for deliveries, they must also make sure that those vehicles are adequately prepared to put in the time and mileage to ensure a successful Black Friday for both businesses and their customers.

An area which may be overlooked by many, but which has the potential to seriously impact a delivery driver’s job, is tyre maintenance. The last thing fleet managers would want is for a driver to be broken down at the side of the road with a tyre issue and a full days’ worth of deliveries in the back.

Here are our top tips to ensure your tyres will keep your vehicles (and cargo) moving this Black Friday.

Under pressure

Make sure your drivers regularly check their tyre pressures and tread depths. Not only is it a legal requirement for a tyre’s tread depth to be above 1.6mm, but regular maintenance has the potential to improve a vehicles’ fuel economy. With multiple drivers each making in excess of a hundred deliveries per day, any fuel efficiencies have the potential to noticeably impact the fleet’s expenditure.

Wrap up warm

Temperatures are dropping rapidly, noticeably impacting the conditions of the road. Once temperatures start to drop below 7 degrees, fleet manager should consider fitting their vehicles with winter or all-season tyres. Made with a rubber compound that doesn’t harden in colder temperatures, they’ll provide your drivers with the grip that they need on snowy, ice and wet roads

Look for anything out of the ordinary

Instruct your drivers to do a quick check of their car before setting off, looking specifically for anything out of the ordinary. Bulges on your tyres or items lodged in the tread have the potential to cause problems further down the line, make sure to remedy any issues before setting out for a full day of driving. If in doubt, consider having a garage look over the tyre.

An event as large as Black Friday requires a huge amount of organisation, but with the right preparation, there’s no reason why it shouldn’t be a resounding success. Make sure your drivers spend just a few minutes checking their tyres before setting off, and it’s one less thing to worry about.

If you need help working out what to look for, the following chart from our Donut Ignore The Signs campaign will hopefully offer some guidance:

 

30th October 2018
Defective tyres cause 1,075 accidents each year

 

Screen Shot 2018 10 18 At 13 52 59

 

Online automotive marketplace ClickMechanic has revealed the impact tyre care has on motorists, with 1,075 accidents per year on average in the UK resulting from tyre neglect. With awareness being raised by this year’s Tyre Safety Month, the need to check tyres – even at a basic level – is so important. 

According to TyreSafe.org, tyre issues have significantly contributed to road accidents in the last five years in the UK, especially when compared to the statistics of other accidents, such as those caused by mobile phone use (651) and braking (1,052). ADVERTISING There’s no doubt that defective tyres are a common cause of road accidents. The number of tyre-related casualties in the last five years is 5,375. In the last five years, over 10 million tyres have been found to be illegal, with a whopping 70.4 per cent of tyres showing a tread depth of 2mm or below – which qualifies as borderline or illegal. ClickMechanic co-founder Andrew Jervis said: “Tyre management is a key component of driver safety, and all drivers should strive to make the necessary checks. This is a case of a simple inspection.”

18th October 2018
Recent survey finds nearly four in 10 LCVs running on dangerously inflated tyres!

Recent fleet inspections carried out across the UK have found that 39 per cent of the light commercial vehicles (LCVs) it checked were operating on at least one tyre inflated to dangerous levels, posing potential safety risks and driving up operating costs.

A sample of 100 LCVs across multiple fleets – including vans, minibuses and ambulances, plus some operating with light trailers – inspected more than 400 individual tyres. It red-flagged 17 per cent of tyres for being under or over-inflated by at least 25 per cent – which can cause a tyre to have less grip, reduced stability under braking and cornering, plus an increased risk of tyre failure.

A further 21 per cent of tyres were flagged amber, meaning their pressures could negatively affect vehicle handling and fuel consumption, as well as speed up tread wear.

The inspection team calculated the average potential saving per vehicle it inspected to be approximately £150 per year – when considering the enhanced fuel consumption and longer tyre life from an LCV operating on correctly inflated tyres.

Other long-term savings will be made through a reduction in tyre-related breakdowns and downtime, tyre damage, accidents, related legal and insurance costs and reputational loss.

A fleet inspector said: “20 of the vans we checked were brand new, yet more than half of the tyres were under-inflated; a quarter of them seriously so. This is particularly concerning given they’d just arrived on a customer’s fleet, fresh from the supplying dealer’s pre-delivery inspection process.”

The inspections revealed one vehicle with a 69 per cent difference in tyre pressure between the offside front and offside rear tyres, another vehicle with two tyres over-inflated by 61 per cent and a vehicle with one rear tyre 54 per cent under-inflated – meaning it was running with less than half the advised pressure.

Commenting on the issue, he adds: “The lack of focus on tyre pressures continues to be a major problem for LCV fleets. It can cause a vehicle to burn more fuel, as well as increasing CO2 emissions, tyre wear and stopping distances. In contrast, taking steps to keep on top of pressures can be a win-win situation, bringing significant advantages from a duty of care point of view under the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER), as well as from an environmental and financial standpoint.” 

Fact panel: How tyres can affect safety & cost

·         A tyre which is 20 per cent under-inflated will typically return 20 per cent less mileage before needing to be replaced.

·         Tyres under-inflated by 15 psi lead to around 6% greater fuel consumption.

·         Driving on under-inflated tyres reduces longevity, leading to deterioration that can result in a rapid deflation. 7 psi or more is classed as dangerous under-inflation.

·         With under-inflated tyres, steering is less precise. If a bend can be taken at 62 mph at a tyre pressure of 29 psi, this drops to 54 mph at 15 psi.

·         If tyre pressures are 30 per cent below the recommended pressures, there is a sharp increase in the risk of aquaplaning.

·         Typical braking distances from 56 mph to 43 mph are 40m at 29 psi, and 5m longer at 15 psi.

26th September 2018
Raising money for Macmillan - The World's Biggest Coffee Morning
Raising money for Macmillan - The World's Biggest Coffee Morning

Air-Seal Products are having a coffee morning in aid of MacMillan Cancer Support. We all know how important funding new research and supporting people with cancer is and we would like to do our bit.

Feel free to pop along on Friday the 28th September between 11am and 1pm for some lovely homemade cake, tea, coffee and a chat. All donations and money raised will be going straight to MacMillan. Everyone welcome!

3rd September 2018
Lucky for some? Just 13 of 152 part worn dealers retailing legal tyres

TyreSafe - Safe Tyres. Save Lives

Investigations by TyreSafe in partnership with Trading Standards over the past five years have revealed a staggering 139 of the 152 part worn outlets visited were selling illegal and unsafe tyres to unsuspecting motorists. That leaves just 13 dealers selling roadworthy tyres from inspections spanning from Scotland to London.

Tyres are an essential factor in road safety as the only part of a vehicle in touch with the road. Tyres provide the grip which both braking and steering systems depend upon to be effective. Driving with defective tyres will mean a vehicle takes longer to stop and be more difficult to control when cornering. 

However, TyreSafe and Trading Standards investigations have highlighted part worn retailers are either ignoring their responsibilities when selling tyres or do not have the required skill to serve motorists properly. During test purchases, some have fitted tyres with water in them to wheels, others have provided the wrong size of tyre, and the supply of examples with nails and other objects embedded in them is all too common.

A recent case has resulted in part worn retailer Hemel Tyres in Bury Road, Hemel Hempstead being ordered to pay over £7,000 in fines and costs, following prosecution by Hertfordshire Trading Standards. In reaching their verdict the magistrates said they were shocked at the case and had considered the potential implications of selling unsafe tyres. In determining the penalties they said that they had considered a custodial sentence and if there were further offences it was highly likely to result in prison for the retailer.   

Terry Hone, Executive Member for Community Safety, said: “We hope that this sends a message to the part-worn tyre market in Hertfordshire that we take these matters very seriously. Our consumers should be able to expect that any tyre they buy for road use complies with safety standards.”

Stuart Jackson, Chairman of TyreSafe, said: “TyreSafe applauds the magistrates’ comments and penalties in this latest conviction but it must be acknowledged that the retail of dangerous and defective tyres by part worn dealers is unacceptably commonplace nationwide. 

“While the shocking findings of joint investigations may reveal some part worn dealers are compliant, even if it is fewer than one-in-ten, motorists have a 90 per cent chance of visiting an outlet selling illegal tyres. As far as TyreSafe is aware, there is no other retail sector with such an atrocious track record. Let’s remember these dealers are selling safety critical components - when tyres are driven in an unroadworthy condition, a vehicle’s braking and steering are compromised, and road users are put at significant risk of a catastrophic tyre failure.

“TyreSafe pledges to continue its potentially life-saving work with Trading Standards and partners with an ambition to drive compliance and competence among part worn retailers.”

TyreSafe is campaigning to drive compliance of part worn retailers with the governing legislation (Consumer Protection Act 1987, referencing the Motor Vehicle Tyres (Safety) Regulations 1994) and raising their competence to a level comparable to new tyre retail technicians. 

 

3rd September 2018
Continued success for one of our customers!!

An updated testimonial letter from John O'Conner Grounds Maintenance who have been using our product for over 11 years now!  "100% success rate, savings on puncture repairs and downtime, finally a product that works" are just a few of the quotes that highlight how happy John O'Conner are using our product.

Click here to see original letter

22nd August 2018
Air-Seal Products launches new Fleet Calculator

Air-Seal Products is proud to announce the recent development of its new Fleet Calculator.

Spending just five minutes of your time to complete our savings calculator will illustrate just how much time and money you can save with the use of our tyre sealants.

Please contact us directly for more information on how we can save you on downtime, extend tyre life and increase your fuel economy.

11th July 2018
Tyre sealant specialist Air-Seal Products gets a Twitter Boost from Theo Paphitis
Tyre sealant specialist Air-Seal Products gets a Twitter Boost from Theo Paphitis

 

 

 

 

A Wellington based firm has received a business boost from Retail Entrepreneur Theo Paphitis.   Last week, Air-Seal Products, tweeted Theo about their business during ‘Small Business Sunday’ and was one of six weekly winners to gain a retweet by Theo to his 500,000 Twitter followers.  The weekly initiative, set up by Theo in 2010, now has over 2200 #SBS winners and supports small businesses in the UK.

Business and retail entrepreneur and self-confessed Shopkeeper, Theo re‐tweeted Air-Seal Products message to his almost 500,000 followers and as a result, Air-Seal Products has more followers on social media.  They are also profiled on the #SBS website (www.theopaphitissbs.com) that is exclusive to all Small Business Sunday winners.

Alex Burnand Managing Director of Air-Seal Products said, We are delighted to be selected as one of the six weekly winners.  We’ve been in business for over eighteen years and to have support from someone like Theo is invaluable.  It can be tough trying to raise your social media profile and Theo Small Business Sunday has helped us achieve just that”

Mr. Paphitis said: “My vision is that everyone who has ever won a #SBS re-tweet from me becomes part of a friendly club; like-minded individuals who can share successes and learnings.

Anyone looking for a re‐tweet from Theo should tweet him about their business on Sunday between 5pm and 7.30pm and include the hashtag #SBS.

 

26th June 2018
Transport Engineer - Tyres: Are tyre sealants appropriate for CV fleets?

 

 

Tyre sealants are claimed to provide remedial and preventative solutions to road damage. Fleet engineers need to understand where a vehicle is working and how far it travels before considering them. Kevin Swallow reports

 

Punctures are a problem Idris Stephens contends with every day, in his role as tyre fleet engineer at Smith’s (Gloucester). A mixed fleet of 150 vehicles works on duties such as waste management, where off-road work cannot be avoided.

In 2005, he discovered the heavy-duty liquid sealant from Air-Seal Products at the Hillhead Show in Buxton, Derbyshire (returning this month: 26-28 June). A trial proved that the tyre sealant could extend its tyres’ working lives, and save money. The fluid, either ethylene or propylene glycol-based, is poured inside the tyre, and is free to flow as it rotates. The tyre’s own air pressure forces fibres and fillers suspended in the fluid into the hole, and stops the leak.

“Once we started trialling it, we noticed the number of roadside incidents involving tyres reduce,” explains Stephens. “The fleet runs on 295, 315 and 385 tyres, and around 85% of the fleet now uses sealant. We spend around £200,000 a year on tyres.”

Smiths’ drivers regularly check tyres for foreign objects. Stephens adds: “We don’t want them pulling out nails just in case the sealant doesn’t take, and the tyre deflates. We do visual checks at the workshop and can tell if the tyre pressure is down. We’ll check it, take out the object and let the sealant do its work, then reflate the tyre back up to the correct pressure,” he says.

Determining exactly how successful the sealant has been for the fleet is difficult, he admits, but he does say that its vehicles tend to have less downtime since it started using the sealants. He also uses sealant on larger off-road plant vehicles, and in one case discovered a tyre with more than 20 nails, all successfully sealed.

Mike Smith, a technical representative for Air-Seal Products, describes tyre sealant as a “permanent temporary repair” to the tyre. At this year’s CV Show, he demonstrated how it works by driving nails into a tyre with a water-based sealant mix of rubber, Kevlar and porcelain (do not try this). Once the tyre was penetrated, he removed the nail and rotated the tyre, allowing the sealant to fill the puncture. He adds: “If the damage is too great, it manages the deflation rather than simply allowing the tyre to rapidly deflate. That will help you get to your destination and not be stranded beside the road.”

The sealant has found favour in UK fleets, reports Smith. “We supply Royal Mail, which uses it for their van fleet, with trials underway for heavy commercials as a preventative measure. It’s applied mechanically using a pump. A 295/80R22.5 tyre would typically take around 1.5 litres, and a litre weighs approximately 1kg.”

Although used in North America for more than 40 years, Belgian product Ultra-Seal was only introduced to Europe in 2016; Tamworth-based Trans UK Equipment Management is the UK distributor. The Ultra-Seal fluid, inserted before the tyre is mounted on the hub, includes rubber and fibres, and has an anti-rust and anti-corrosion formulation to protect the rim (pictured above).

As well as trials with major transport and logistics companies, Ultra-Seal also supplies Danish transport company DSV, which runs more than 7,000 trailers. “They have seen a reduction in punctures, blow-outs and breakdowns in tyres filled with Ultra-Seal. Tyres last about 35% longer due to better tyre pressure and therefore less tyre wear,” claims business development manager Carla van Santvoort.

A mix of short haul with off-road travel is the right scenario for using preventative tyre sealants, according to Stuart John. He is sales director of aftermarket firm Rema Tip Top Automotive UK. States John: “We are approached by a lot of plant hire companies, construction and off-road operators who use sealants in those situations where you might pick up a foreign object. That is where you have the benefit of tyre sealant.

“In my personal opinion, and with 30 years’ experience in the industry, I would not recommend a tyre sealant for long-haul,” he says. “You can pick up a nail in the tread area that penetrates the tyre. You don’t know what or how bad the injury of the tyre is; the tyre sealant could seal it temporarily for a few miles but the vehicle might travel another 200 miles. That injury is going to get worse to the point that it could blow the tyre, and the driver might not even have known he or she had a problem.”

Instead, he recommends long-haul operators fit a tyre pressure monitoring system (TPMS) that would identify a puncture or loss of pressure immediately. This technology may compete with the upper end of tyre sealant products. For example, Goodyear has stopped producing Duraseal, a sealant system that is part of the inner lining. It promotes its Proactive Solutions fleet monitoring system instead.

OTHER SUPPLIERS

Other tyre manufacturers still offer sealants for cars and light commercial vehicles: Continental produces ContiSeal, which is a viscous layer on the inner side of the tyre for punctures up to 5mm diameter. Michelin makes Selfseal; Pirelli produces Seal Inside tyres.

In general, tyre manufacturers steer clear of retro-applied remedial and preventative sealants, both as products and in commenting about their use. Multiple tyre manufacturers contacted declined to comment for this article.

But car recovery agency the AA did comment. About a quarter of respondents to a recent questionnaire run with a sealant-compressor solution rather than a full-size or space-saver spare tyre. It adds: “Sealant and a compressor saves space and weight, but won’t work for all punctures.”

If it does work, it is not considered a permanent repair, at least according to British Standard AU 159. This standard is referenced by the AA, charity Tyresafe, the British Tyre Manufacturers’ Association (BTMA) and the IRTE’s own Bus and Coach Tyre Maintenance best practice guide (see link). The standard recommends that if drivers discover a foreign object, they should get the tyre checked at a garage and replaced if necessary. (According to Dexel Tyre & Auto Centre, BS AU 159 only applies to cars and vans, and not commercial vehicles or heavy plant.)

Belgian company Ultra-Seal took its battle to get sealants recognised as a genuine solution into court, and has prevailed over tyre associations in Germany and Denmark.

By extending tyres’ working life, even if only on a temporary basis, sealant suppliers are providing competition to Europe’s tyre manufacturers.

FURTHER INFORMATION

More about BS AU 159 – https://is.gd/biquze and https://is.gd/ulecok

Best Practice Guide for Bus & Coach Tyre Maintenance (IRTE) – https://is.gd/ukisap

 

Author
Kevin Swallow

 

20th June 2018
Air-Seal Products confirms silver membership with Constructionline
Air-Seal Products confirms silver membership with Constructionline

We are thrilled to announce that we have been officially awarded our Silver Membership with Constructionline!

Constructionline is a register of pre-qualified suppliers and buyers, to government standards and allows buyers and customers to know we have been pre-qualified which takes some of the hard work away from them.

 

 

« Previous | 1 | 2 | 3 | Next »