Nitrogen is a dry, inert gas used to inflate airplane tires, off-road truck tires, military vehicle tires, and race car tires for improved performance and safety.
Oxygen in compressed air permeates through the wall of the tire reducing the tire's inflation pressure. During its journey through the tire wall, oxygen oxidizes the rubber compounds in the tire, causing under-inflation and deteriorated rubber. Dry nitrogen helps the tire to run cooler and more safely.
Oxygen diffuses through the tire much faster than Nitrogen.
The most significant benefit of filling automobile tires with nitrogen is enhanced safety. Under-inflation or tires due to diffusion of air through the tire has been identified as a significant cause of tire failures.Transport Canada says: "Without proper maintenance, such as correct inflation pressure, tires could suddenly fail, causing you to lose control of your vehicle." http://www.tc.gc.ca/aboutus/travel/travellerinfo.htm#road
Correct inflation is highly significant when considering tire life and performance. It is not always possible to look at a tire and detect under-inflation. However, under-inflation can cause many tire related problems. As inflation pressure largely determines a tire's load capacity, under-inflation results in an overloaded tire.
An under-inflated tire operates at high deflection resulting in decreased fuel economy, sluggish handling and may result in excessive mechanical flexing and heat buildup leading to catastrophic tire failure.The Government of Canada says: "Under-inflated tires increase fuel consumption." - Transport Canada
The causes of premature tire failure which are addressed by nitrogen include:
Oxidative aging is caused by the diffusion of oxygen from the pressurized air cavity of the tire to the outside atmosphere. Tests have shown that if tires are inflated with nitrogen, there is significant reduction in tire failure.
A. No. Nitrogen is an inert, non-combustible, non-flammable, non-corrosive gas. Nitrogen is very safe!Q. Will nitrogen affect the tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) on my vehicle?
A. Yes. Nitrogen will help to maintain proper inflation of your tires and reduce the number of faults detected by the TPMS.Q. Do I still need to check tire pressure?
A. Yes. But, you should find the tire pressure to be more consistent.Q. What about my spare tire?
A. You should certainly inflate your spare tire with nitrogen to assure proper inflation when it comes time to use it.Q. Can I add regular air to my tire when Nitro-SafeTM?
A. Yes. If you ever have to add regular air, in any amount, simply return to the dealership at your earliest convenience and have us purge and refill the tire with nitrogen.