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Yes, you should fill up your tires with air when your tire pressure indicator comes on

When it gets cold, you've probably seen that light go off in your car to fill your tires with air, but is that necessary?

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — With temps dropping again and the chance of snow or ice on the way, it's essential to check your car to make sure it's in tip-top shape for the winter weather.

It's especially important to check your tires. When it gets cold, you've probably seen that light go off in your car to fill your tires with air, but is that necessary?

THE QUESTION:

Do you really need to fill up your tires with air when your tire pressure indicator comes on?

OUR SOURCES:

THE ANSWER:

Yes, you should fill up your tires with air when your tire pressure indicator comes on.

WHAT WE FOUND:

"You should check your tire pressure when it gets cold outside, but the general rule of thumb is for every 10 degrees the temperature drops, your tires lose about one PSI," David Undercoffler said.

According to Firestone, PSI means pounds per square inch. Your tires could lose 4PSI if the temps drop 20 degrees.

Undercoffler tells us tire pressure is something that shouldn't be ignored, especially in the winter.

"Even small drops in tire pressure can be a little a more dangerous, tire can be more slippery on wet roads," Undercoffler said. 

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According to Firestone, underinflated tires can increase braking time and skid more easily on wet pavement.

Having underinflated tires can also decrease the lifespan of your tires, making them more vulnerable to damage.

Having properly inflated tires can also save you money. According to the US Department of Energy, the correct PSI can boost your gas mileage up to 3%.

Contact Meghan Bragg at mbragg@wcnc.com and follow her on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

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