DRIVEN BY AIR.

FAQs

Please choose from the FAQ sections below

General

  • Can I buy direct from PCL?

    We have a long established distributor network who sell through various channels worldwide including on-line. See the Find a Distributor section for more details.

  • I have a technical question, can anyone help?

    Certainly, we have a dedicated Technical Department who will be able to help with most questions. Please telephone 0114 248 2712 or use this form.

  • How can I get a copy of your catalogue?

    You can either request a copy by post, using our enquiries form or you can download them here.

  • How do I find information on a specific part?

    The easiest way to find information on a PCL product is to type the part number into the SITE SEARCH box. Don’t worry if you don’t have the full part number just enter what you have.

  • How do I register the warranty for my PCL product?

    Simple, just complete the form here.

Tyre Safety & Maintenance

  • What should I do when checking my tyres?

    Tyre checks should include:

    • Checking the tread depth meet vehicle manufactures’ recommendations.
    • Checking the tyre pressure meet the legal minimum depth.
    • Checking the overall condition

    At the same time as checking your tyre pressure and tread depth, examine the tyres for any cuts or bulges which must be assessed by a professional if found – a bulge in a tyre indicates internal structural damage and must be replaced.

    The tyre must also be replaced if you find any cuts deep enough to reveal the internal structure of the tyre.

  • When should I check my tyres?

    Tyre checks should be made every month as well as before making any long journeys by using a reliable and accurate tyre pressure gauge.

    Always measure tyre pressure when tyres are “cold”. Tyres are cold if they have not been driven for more than 2 miles at low speed or have been stationary for a least two hours.

  • Why is correct tyre pressure important?

    Correct tyre pressure is important for several reasons;

    Tyre life – under or over inflated tyres increase wear

    Fuel economy – under inflated tyres increase fuel consumption

    Safety – under or over inflated tyres will affect grip and braking performance

    Ride comfort – over inflated tyres can result in a harsh and uncomfortable ride

  • Why is it important to check your pressures regularly?

    Correct tyre pressure is vital to your safety on the road. Under-inflated tyres affect handling and grip, potentially causing irregular or unpredictable vehicle behaviour. They are also much more likely to suffer from a dangerous sudden rapid deflation, especially on high-speed motorway journeys.

    By keeping your tyres at their optimum pressure, your running costs are also reduced. Under-inflated tyres require a bigger force to make them turn, so your car uses more fuel. Additionally, tyres which are not set to their correct pressure wear out more quickly.

    So, to benefit from lower fuel bills, longer tyre life, increased safety and reduced CO2 emissions, make sure you check your tyre pressures at least once a month and before a long journey.

  • Why is tread depth important?

    Tread depth is highly important for road safety and provides a good grip on wet surfaces. The tread pattern is used to remove water from between the tyre and the road surface. Drivers run the risk of reduced grip and a longer stopping distance if the tread depth is incorrect.

    Drivers can be fined up to £2,500 and given three penalty points for each tyre which does not comply with the regulations.

  • How do I determine the correct tyre pressure for my vehicle?

    Tyre pressures are quoted for cold tyres and will be specified in your vehicle handbook and may be on a sticker inside the fuel flat, on the drivers (or passengers) door or even inside the glove box.

    Normally there are two tyre pressures quoted; one for “normal use” and a higher tyre pressure for when the vehicle is underload. Make sure you adjust your tyre pressures accordingly.

    If you don’t know the correct tyre pressure for your vehicle, refer to the manufacturer’s customer service department. Many tyre retailers will also be able to provide this information. Alternatively, you can obtain the correct tyre pressure for your car by visiting the tyre pressure checker on TyreSafe’s website and entering your vehicle’s details.

    Never use the tyre pressure quoted on the tyre sidewall. This pressure refers to the maximum inflation pressure a tyre can contain under maximum load.

  • What is the minimum legal tread depth?

    The current law for the tread depth for cars, vans and LCV is to have a minimum depth of 1.6mm across the central three-quarters of the tyre and around the entire circumference.

    It is recommended to increase the safety of the car to replace the tyres before the 1.6mm limit is reached. Many vehicle manufactures’ suggest replacing the tyres when they reach 3mm.

    For any vehicles exceeding 3.5 tonnes the current law states that the tread should be a minimum of 1mm across the central three-quarters of the tyre and around the entire circumference.

    Motorcycles over 50cc the minimum tread is 1mm across three-quarters of the width of the tread pattern and a visible tread on the remaining quarter. Motorcycles up to 50cc are required to have all grooves of the original tyre pattern clearly visible.

  • How do I know if my tyres need inflating or deflating?

    The only accurate way to know if your tyres need to be inflated (or deflated) is by measuring the pressure with a reliable and accurate tyre pressure gauge.

    A common misconception is that a visual check is sufficient to assess tyre pressure. Tyres can be significantly under or over-inflated by up to 20% and you may not be able to tell just by looking at them.

    By using an accurate and reliable tyre pressure gauge you need to check the tyre pressure matches with the vehicles manufactures’ recommendations.

Nitrogen

  • Is it true that nitrogen tyre inflation will improve a vehicle’s handling, fuel efficiency and tyre life?

    Not directly, no.

    High purity nitrogen has been used for decades in Nascar, Formula One, the Tour de France, the US Military, and many other applications where safety, speed and economy are vital – so you would think the answer would be yes.

    However, it’s accurate tyre pressure which makes the difference, and nitrogen can help maintain this for longer periods of time.

    Nitrogen does offer an advantage of its own over air. Air includes a small percentage of water which will corrode your wheels once it’s inside your tyres. Therefore using pure nitrogen will remove moisture which may lead to corrosion – and pressure change.

    There are therefore two benefits of nitrogen which will help maintain your accurate tyre pressure for longer – and it is the latter which results in modest savings in fuel and tyre life.

    If you decide to try nitrogen your tyres will need filling and purging several times in succession to completely remove air from your tyres, which can be time consuming. PCL’s ACCURA Mobile allows the operator to preset the pressure for a standard inflation top-up, or a purge and fill, so that they can get on with alternative work whilst tyres are inflating.

    Once this has been done, do not expect to feel any significant difference unless your tyre pressure was seriously inaccurate before you changed to nitrogen. You may eventually notice some savings in fuel and maintenance costs but remember – this is due to accurate tyre pressure and nitrogen’s ability to help keep it constant.

  • Why does Nitrogen help tyres remain at the same pressure for longer?

    The oxygen and water vapours contained in compressed air leak through the tyre structure, causing pressure drop – where as Nitrogen is dry, therefore using it for inflation ensures these vapours are minimal, meaning the pressure remains constant for longer periods of time.

  • What other benefits are there?

    Since Nitrogen is dry, the lack of water vapour also eliminates internal rim rust and damage.

  • Does Nitrogen need special tyres?

    No. Nitrogen can be used in any tyres, new or existing. The best results are obtained by purging the tyre of air and then replacing with Nitrogen, however it’s still possible to top up tyres filled with Nitrogen with air if necessary.

    And for those who are already sold on the importance of accurate tyre pressure, Nitrogen inflation provides enhanced inflation for optimum speed and performance. Just ask Formula 1 drivers!

  • What kind of equipment is available?

    ACCURA Mobile is the latest technology in high performance Nitrogen tyre inflation for tyre shops, workshops, car dealerships, and transport depots.

    Easy to use, the unit is operated with an industry standard bottle or direct from a Nitrogen generator and can be preset for a standard inflation top up, or operated with a N2 function for a purge and fill cycle.

    Equipped to inflate up to 6 tyres simultaneously, power to the unit is supplied through a sealed battery with the charger allowing the unit to run direct if required, increasing flexibility and enhancing portability.

    You can also use Nitrogen with any of PCL’s tyre inflation (or compressed air) equipment.

    Those who have already converted to Nitrogen inflation will confirm that once you’ve tried it, you won’t want to use anything else.

Threads

  • What is a male or female thread?

    A male thread is an external thread.

    A female thread is an internal thread.

  • What is a parallel or taper thread?

    A parallel or straight thread (commonly BSPP – British Standard Pipe Parallel thread) has a constant diameter and is denoted by the letter G.

    A taper thread (commonly BSPT – British Standard Pipe Taper thread) has a diameter which increases or decreases along the length of the thread and is denoted by the letter R.

  • What does R, Rp, Rc, G mean?

    R, Rp, Rc threads are taken from BS EN 10226-3:2005 pipe threads where pressure-tight joints are made on the threads.

    G threads are taken from BS EN ISO 228-2:2003 pipe threads where pressure-tight joints are not made on the threads. The pressure tight joint is achieved by the compression of a soft material (such as an o-ring seal or washer) between the end face of the male thread and a socket or nipple face, with a tightening of a back nut.

Tyre Valves & Tyre Valve Connectors

  • What is an open and closed end connector?

    There are two types of tyre valve connector. It is therefore important to specify whether a closed or open end type is required.

    Closed End – used when air is supplied directly from a main air line (i.e. compressor or air receiver). A non-return valve unseats on connection to the tyre’s valve allowing air to flow into the tyre.

    Open End – used with PCL MK3 tyre inflators, ACCURA tyre inflators and portable gauges. This connector has a pin which unseats the tyre’s valve when in use.

  • Air is leaking from the end of my tyre valve connector

    You probably have an open end connector currently fitted to your equipment when you should have a closed end. Try switch to a closed end style.

  • What’s the difference between a 8v1 and 12v1 tyre valve connector?

    There are basically two sizes of tyre valves in use.

    8v1 – is the standard Schrader car tyre valve size found on the majority of tyre valves. It is approximately 8mm in diameter.

    12v1 – is a large bore tyre valve found on some aircraft and large volume tyres (earth moving equipment, heavy plant, etc). It is approximately 12mm in diameter.

Driving Your Car Smarter

  • 6 Smarter Driving Tips

    There are a few easy things you can do when you drive and look after your car to help reduce the amount of fuel you burn and so cut down on CO2 emissions.

    The secret is to help reduce the amount of work your engine has to do, because the greater the workload, the more fuel is burned – so the higher the CO2 emissions.

    By following our smarter driving tips you could cut your CO2 emissions by around 8 per cent – equivalent to an annual fuel saving of up to one month per year. All you need to get started are the smarter driving tips below that you can put into practice straight away.

  • Pump up to cut down

    Under inflated tyres create more resistance when your car is moving. That means your engine has to work harder, so more fuel is used and more CO2 emissions are produced. Simply check and adjust your tyre pressures regularly and also before long journeys. This will also help to increase the life of your tyres.

    Under inflated tyres increase CO2 but over inflated tyres can be unsafe, so check your car manual for the correct tyre pressure. Remember, a car with a heavier load may need different air pressure in the tyres.

  • Less clutter in your car means less CO2

    Clutter in your boot is extra weight your engine has to carry around. By removing it, you could reduce your engine’s workload. This will burn less fuel and cut your CO2 emissions, so unload any items you won’t need for your journey before you set out.

  • Driving at an appropriate speed reduces CO2

    Speed limits are the maximum lawful speeds which may be driven in ideal circumstances. Drivers should never exceed the speed limit. Staying at or within the speed limit increases driver safety.

    It also reduces CO2 emissions and saves money on your petrol costs. At 70mph you could be using up to 9 per cent more fuel than at 60mph and up to 15 per cent more fuel than at 50mph.

  • Less stopping and starting means less CO2

    Every time you stop then start again in a traffic queue, the engine uses more fuel and therefore produces more CO2. Keep an eye on the traffic ahead and slow down early by gently lifting your foot off the accelerator while keeping the car in gear.

    In this way, the traffic may have started moving again by the time you approach the vehicle in front, so you can then change gear and be on your way.

  • Over revving accelerates emissions

    Modern car engines are designed to be efficient from the moment they are switched on, so revving up like a Formula 1 car in pole position only wastes fuel and increases engine wear. Using your gears wisely by changing up a gear a little earlier can also reduce revs.

    If you drive a diesel car, try changing up a gear when the rev counter reaches 2000rpm. For a petrol car, change up at 2500rpm.

  • Idling is wasting fuel

    When the engine is idling you’re wasting fuel and adding to CO2 emissions. If you’re likely to be at a standstill for more than three minutes, simply switch off the engine.