Nitrogen is all around us. It is a non-flammable dry gas, the air we breathe is made up of 78% nitrogen. Why the sudden interest in the periodic table? Replacing the air in automobile tires with nitrogren is becoming increasingly popular and I wanted to get the scoop!
Because of its larger molecular size, nitrogen migrates through a tire three to four times slower than oxygen. By reducing the percentage of oxygen, water vapor and other gases in tires from 22% to 7% or lower, tires will maintain proper pressure longer than using regular air. For example, with 95% nitrogen in your tires, they retain optimal pressure three to four times longer.
Proper tire pressure lessens rolling resistance and maximizes fuel efficiency.
Under-inflated tires wear quickly on the shoulders and over-inflated tires wear in the center.
Safety & Reliability
Under-inflated tires cause 90 percent of blowouts. Nitrogen provides more reliable pressure for reduced blowout potential.
Proper tire inflation ensures the recommended "contact patch" of the tire on the road.
And saving the best for last…IT'S ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY
Anything and everything that improves fuel efficiency and reduces toxic emission is good for the environment and nitrogen in tires can help!
- 15,000 miles per year
- 20 mpg = 750 gallons
- Up to $4 per gallon = $3,000
- 5.8% fuel savings = $164 per year
Try out the Get Nitrogen Institute savings calculator and determine your exact savings based on your driving habits.
Of course there is plenty of debate on the subject. Although any tire can be filled with nitrogen, it is not yet readily available at the local gas station. It is important to find a certified dealer, and there is also a fee associated with the service. With the understanding that regular air is low/no cost, I made the decision to give nitrogen a try for the planet's sake. I then discovered there is a Get Nitrogen Driver Protection Program. There are several advantages to this program, the most impressive being tire repair and replacement coverage should the nitrogen-filled tire go flat or fail due to a road hazard. It is also important for me to know that if my nitrogen-filled tires get low, I can simply top them off with regular air and take the car in for a nitrogen fill-up at my convenience.
When the "rubber meets the road" switching to nitrogen has a green impact.