Updated at: 12-03-2022 - By: micdot

If you want your tires to perform to their full potential, you need to make sure they have enough air pressure. Tire pressure varies with changes in ambient temperature. Tire pressure rises in hot weather because air molecules travel quicker and farther apart. In other words, what’s the distinction between a cold and a hot tire pressure? Cold tire pressure can lead to under-inflation, whilst hot tire pressure can lead to over-inflation of the tires by increasing the pressure. Winter temperatures cause tire pressure to drop because the air molecules in the tire become clumped together and travel more slowly in the cold, which lowers tire pressure.

Temperatures below freezing cause air molecules to clump together and move more slowly. As a result, the tire pressure will decrease. You should know about this as a car driver so that you can distinguish between the cold tire pressure and the hot tire pressure. In order to get the best performance out of your tires and stay safe, it’s critical that you follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for tire pressure. Knowing about these things can also help car owners decide what to do when the weather changes.

What Is The Difference Between Cold And Hot Tire Pressure?

It is possible to under-inflate the tires with cold tire pressure and to over-inflate them with hot tire pressure. A 4-6 psi increase in hot tire pressure is not uncommon.

Tire Pressure In Summer Vs. Winter

Tire pressure is affected by changes in temperature outside. Tire pressure can drop in the winter because the cold causes the air molecules inside the tire to clump together and travel more slowly. Tire pressure rises as a result of air molecules moving more quickly, bumping into each other more frequently and expanding during the sweltering summer months. Simply said, summertime tire pressure is higher than wintertime tire pressure.

How Much Psi Do Tires Increase When Hot?

For every 10 degrees Fahrenheit increase in temperature, tire pressure rises by around 2%. For cars, vans, and light trucks with standard pressure and standard tire inflation, the recommended pressure ranges from 30 to 50 psi. As the temperature rises by 10 degrees Fahrenheit, the tire pressure of these vehicles drops by one psi. There will be a two-psi increase in the pressure of 80-100 PSI recreational vehicles, buses and trucks.

Should You Inflate Tires Cold Or Hot?

The recommended psi for tire inflation drops when it’s cold outside, so make sure you keep your tires topped off as needed during the winter months. Driving a car with underinflated tires in the winter can increase friction, make steering harder, and lead to tire degradation.

On the other hand, unless absolutely necessary, you should not pump your tires during warmer seasons. In the morning, before you get behind the wheel, check your tire pressure with a tire pressure gauge. Tire pressure might be affected if you park your automobile in direct sunshine or on hot pavement. To avoid blowouts, keep your tires cool and avoid friction with the asphalt road and the rubber that makes up the tire from reaching its breaking point, both of which can contribute to tire overheating. Make sure you follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for maintaining proper tire pressure.

Make sure you have your tire manufacturer’s manual ready to find out the manufacturer’s suggested cold tire pressure for optimal winter tire pressure If you don’t have a handbook, ask a reputable auto repair shop for help or hunt for a digital copy online. The recommended tire pressure can also be found on the inside of some automobiles, in the form of a label. To keep the tires stable and responsive during the cold season, tire manufacturers recommend that the recommended pressure for summer and other seasons be increased by 3 to 5 psi.

A shakier steering wheel, a flatter appearance, and a longer stop time when you step on the brakes are all telltale indicators of underinflated tires. The risk of a collision is increased even further when driving with low tire pressure, especially in colder climates where the roads are more slick than usual. As a result, it’s imperative that you check your tire’s recommended air pressure before pumping up the pressure in the winter.

Do Tires Lose Pressure In The Cold?

Yes, when it’s chilly outside, the tire pressure drops. Colder weather causes air molecules to condense and slow down because of the reduced temperature. Air pressure will drop, perhaps causing an underinflated tire. To avoid problems like premature tire wear, poor gas mileage, and other handling concerns, you must inflate your tires during the colder months. However, this does not mean that you should inflate your tires beyond what the tire manufacturer recommends. Make sure your tire is inflated to the proper pressure.

Do Tires Lose Pressure In Hot Weather?

In hot conditions, tires don’t lose pressure. Nevertheless, when the temperature is hot, the tire’s air molecules travel around faster and bump into each other more frequently. When this happens, the tire pressure might go up, even to the point of being overinflated. Because of the dangers of overheating, it is also possible for the tire to explode.

Should You Overinflate Tires In Winter?

Overinflating tires is never a good idea, but this is especially true in the winter. Inflated tires have a smaller contact patch, resulting in poorer handling. The roads are also more treacherous in the winter, necessitating more caution and maneuvering in order to maintain traction. This raises the risk of uneven and severe tread wear.


The temperature outside has an effect on tire pressure. Inspecting the correct air pressure on your tires and making sure they are not over or under inflated are always a smart idea.