Release 09-25b
March 26, 2009

    Dimitri Stanich
(916) 322-2990
Tire pressure check will save money, gas and lives
Requirement for automotive service industry will reduce emissions and improve mileage

Today, the Air Resources Board adopted a regulation that will require California's automotive maintenance industry to check the tire pressure of every vehicle they service.

Effective July 1, 2010, this rule, one of 44 early action measures required by AB 32, will annually:

"Checking tire pressure is one of the many simple things that we can all do to reduce our impact on the environment," said ARB board member Barbara Riordan. "While we should do this monthly, this measure makes it convenient and regular."

The 40,000 service providers subject to the regulation include smog check stations, engine repair facilities and oil service providers. Those not included are car wash, body and paint, and glass repair businesses.

"Under-inflated tires waste fuel, cause tires to wear out prematurely and increase drivers' safety risk," said Dan Zielinski, senior vice president with the Rubber Manufacturers Association, which represents tire manufacturers. "This regulation will help protect California's environment, help consumers save money in fuel and tire costs, and help Californians optimize vehicle safety."

The cost of implementing the regulation balanced with the benefits from the measures will save the average Californian 12 dollars per year. About 38 percent of vehicles on the road in California today have severely under inflated tires, six pounds under manufacturer's recommendations. As well as seriously reducing the vehicle's handling capabilities, under inflation can cause irreparable damage, reduce tread life and force the engine to work harder thus increasing the amount of fuel needed.

ARB board member Barbara Riordan announcing the adoption of the tire inflation regulation.

California is leading the nation in efforts to cut emissions of gases linked to higher temperatures around the globe. The Global Warming Solutions Act or AB 32, signed by Governor Schwarzenegger in 2006, requires the ARB to draft and implement strategies that will reduce the state's greenhouse gas contributions. Recently, the ARB proposed a Low Carbon Fuel Standard, a regulation curbing greenhouse gas emissions from all of the state's transportation fuels.

"This regulation is an example of how the drive to meet AB 32 goals will benefit the state," Riordan continued. "Reducing our environmental footprint will reinvigorate our economy by establishing California as the lead source of technological innovation, diversifying our state's fuel sources, creating jobs and helping efforts to avert climate change which threatens the state's ecosystem."

For more information go here: /cc/tire-pressure/tire-pressure.htm .

The Air Resources Board is a department of the California Environmental Protection Agency. ARB's mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy. The ARB oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health based air quality standards.