Last post on Jul 13, 2011 at 1:12 PM
You are in the Mazda Protege
What is this discussion about?
Mazda Protege5, Wagon
#6665 of 7874 Two more questions :)
Aug 08, 2003 (2:17 pm)
1. I have the sport AT - is this somewhat rare? Even Edmunds doesn't list this car as Manual and Auto seperately, and I rarely see posts about the AT. Are there any concerns about the AT? Is it used in other proteges or other Mazdas? (I guess that was really more than one question, but oh well)
2. How do you know if you have a ".5" year model? As is, 2002.5, as I see some people referring to their cars - mine was created in March of 2003. Is that considered a 2003.5?
Aug 08, 2003 (6:25 pm)
1. The sport AT replaced the standard AT in 2002.5. It is also used in the Protege ES. I don't know that there is any difference between the sport and the non-sport AT aside from the extra electronics for the manual shift mode, and I know of no specific issues with the Protege AT.
2. See #1. Seriously though, Mazda often changes the trim packages mid-year. You have to pay attention to tell the differences. For instance, the 2003 had a standard roof rack. The 2003.5 deleted the roof rack and added a spare-tire sub-woofer. Sometimes they add or delete colors (as with the MS Protege) The Special Editions (older Proteges and Miatas) are almost always half-year models. The DOT doesn't necessarily track these half year models in VIN numbers. You may have to call Mazda to find out for sure if no one can tell you here whether a specific car is a mid-year refresh model.
Aug 08, 2003 (7:02 pm)
I have the 2003.5 edition in case you're interested - no roof rack, and the subwoofer (which came with no instructions and I have yet to figure out.)
I think it's kind-of silly how much they raised the price (over a year) while actually deleting options such as the roof rack (lists now as $250). Oh well, I still feel I got a fair deal that doesn't keep me up at night, and I don't really need a roof rack, so there.
Thanks for your responses,
#6668 of 7874 Philippa and Tire Pressure
Aug 09, 2003 (1:28 pm)
I assume that by now you've checked your tire pressures. May I ask what they were?
What did you finally decide to set them at? The Mazda recommended 32/32 front/rear?
By the way, I expect you know this, but "always" set your tire pressures cold. Driving, at interstate speeds, especially, will heat the tires up and the pressures will increase around 3 psi. (They'll drop back down when the car has been sitting for a while.) Do not bleed the pressures down when the tires are hot, for then they will be too low when cold. The manufacturer has taken this into account when recommending their general-purpose pressures.
Also, note that the general rule is that for each change of 10 degrees in ambient temperature, tires will gain or lose one psi. For example, if you set your tire pressures to 32/32 in the mid-day heat on an 80 degree day, and then check them the next morning when the temperatures have dropped to 60 degrees overnight, you can expect to see pressures around 30/30. That's a two psi drop in pressure following the 20 degrees drop in ambient temperature -- one psi drop per 10 degrees. This is normal, should you happen to notice this phenomenon, and your tires are not leaking air. By noon when the temperatures have climbed back to 80 degrees, your tires will once again be at 32/32 psi.
It's a good idea to check your tire pressures weekly, and whenever there has been a dramatic change in ambient temperature. In fact, whenever I approach my car to drive it, I give a quick glance at all my tires to confirm that they "look right." With experience you'll be able to readily see whether a tire is abnormally low, probably from a slow leak.
Your tires are your "lifeline." Those four fist-sized contact patches are all that is connecting you to the road -- and permitting you to control your car. Tire condition and tire pressures are critically important. You're wise to seek to learn more about them.
You'll probably want to purchase your own tire gauge so your pressure readings are consistent. The gauges found at service stations are often inaccurate -- they get dropped a lot, which is not good for maintaining consistency and accuracy.
For what it's worth, I run 32/32 psi in my 2002 P5 for regular driving. If I've loaded up the kayaks and our gear, and am heading on a longer interstate trip, I'll increase the pressures to 35/35.
If I drove at 80 mph and above for any length of time, I'd increase the pressures, too.
I hope this has been helpful.
#6669 of 7874 Good post Kauai!
Aug 09, 2003 (2:06 pm)
That's a pretty complete overview of the basic tire pressure set up!
Aug 09, 2003 (9:40 pm)
I was just offering some additional thoughts to the already excellent advice offered by you and the others here.
It's remarkable just how much there is to explain about tires alone, isn't it?
Some of the bad advice on the 'Net needs to be countered, too, such as that nonsense of inflating tires to the tire manufacturer's figure on the tire sidewall, which is, as you so correctly pointed out, the MAXIMUM permissible pressure that should not be exceeded lest one risk blowing the tire clean off the rim with potentially catastrophic consequences!
If you think your car rides harshly at 40 psi inflation, try 52 psi! My goodness. It'll shake the fillings right out of your teeth. Apart from track days, autocrossing, and other competition events, I cannot think of any circumstances when one might need to inflate one's tires to the maximum permissible pressure.
I often wonder when I see such nonsense advocated on the 'Net whether the writer is truly so ill-informed, or whether they think this is a good joke.
Young(?) folks like Phillipa need good advice when they wish to learn more about their cars and automobiles in general.
You came to the right place, Phillipa. There are a lot of knowledgeable people here who'll steer you (pardon the pun in the right direction.
Aug 09, 2003 (10:00 pm)
In contacting Mazda concerning replacement tires for my 2002 PRO5,they say they can only recommend the same brand and the same size as the OEM tires.That certainly doesn't leave one with much choice at all,as I've seen from many tire companies.Some tire stores give some optional sizes and brands which they say is compatible with the PRO5. Mazda doesn't support deviating from their position of OEM only. What to do? Thanks for your suggestions,Martin
Aug 10, 2003 (1:18 am)
I have replaced the Dunlop with the Michelin which are one of the tires recommended by ... [drum roll here] ... my Mazda dealer.
There is no reason why you shouldn't be able to put different tire on your car. As you probably knew, many people here decide to stay away from the Dunlop SP5000 while changing their tires. No need to be too strict on the size of the replacement. All you need to make sure are:
- the size is suitable for the stock rims,
- the tire diameter does not vary more than say 2% from the stock tire (to keep the speedometer and odometer accurate, as well as a similar torque load conditions for the engine)
- there is no risk that the rubbing.
You can trust Ted's (aka Boggse) recommendation.
#6674 of 7874 Re: "Any tire engineers out there? Anyone know for sure?"
Aug 10, 2003 (4:40 am)
Try the "Tire Tires Tires" forum - where I usually hang out. Just happened to do a search (I try to do that once a week.) and came across this discussion.
The maximum inflation written on the sidewall - Tires are much stronger than kauai215 thinks and you are not in significantly more danger from inflating that high - at least from the pressure alone. Increased risk of an impact failure, sure, but is only a bit more of a risk. But he's right that the proper inflation pressure is what is on the placard.
What the vehicle manufacturers put on the placard (at least in the US) is to accommodate the maximum load the vehicle was designed to carry. If you look at the placard, you'll see the letters GAWR (Gross Axle Weight Rating). 99% of the time that's the load carrying capacity of the tires at the specified inflation pressure. Add the front and rear GAWR's together and you'll notice that this is greater than the GVW (Gross Vehicle Weight) which is the maximum design weight of the vehicle fully loaded. The reason the GAWR's exceed the GVW is that the vehicle manufacturers know they need to accommodate loads that aren't exactly where they are predicted them to be.
Sometimes the vehicle manufacturers will add a reserve into the way they calculate the proper inflation pressure. This is a good thing and this is precisely why the some Internet discussions point to the Ford / Firestone debate to support the contention that they should use what's printed in the sidewall. The truth is that Ford generally specifies inflation pressures with no reserve capacity, and Firestone was merely pointing that out and suggesting that every vehicle ought to be designed with some reserve capacity. Personally, I think this is just good engineering practice!
Tire recommendations from vehicle dealers - For liability reasons, I can't imagine any dealer recommending anything but what came OE. HUGE, HUGE potential liability.
Tire Standards - The US tire standardizing body is the Tire and Rim Association (TRA). In Europe it is the European Tire and Rim Technical Organization (ETRTO). There are others through out the world, but these 2 pretty much dominate the field and everyone else tries to be compatible with them.
These guys set the load tables (load vs inflation for a given tire size), the nominal dimensions for a given tire size (Note, there is no requirement that a tire be dimensionally close to the nominal, but they usually are.), and the dimensions and contour of the wheels where they interact with the tire (It is up to the tire manufacturers to design around those dimensions and contours).
The Tire Industry Association is more of a dealer / service organization. They provide training materials on mounting and repairing tires and anything else that a tire service technician might need to know.
There is also an organization called the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA). This organization is more of a collective voice for anyone involved with things made out of rubber. (Tires, gloves, hoses, seals, etc) RMA is the industry's conduit to the government and the public. The RMA has published many things regarding tires and their use. Everything that gets published by the RMA is reviewed by the member tire manufacturers (pretty much everyone!) and reflects their collective wisdom. For example, RMA has been heavily involved with interpreting and implementing the TREAD Act and serving as a singlular point where the government can talk to the tire companies and vice versa.
So to answer the specific question - ISO recognizes these organizations and their standards. But sidewall siffness is not specified anywhere.
I would recommend that everyone use the placard inflation. That way you are always covered for the maximum load conditions. Personally, I like a crisper steering response, so I add 3 to 5 psi to what the placard says. I also get better fuel economy, better tire wear, better wet traction, better snow traction, better tire durability, and only give up a bit of ride harshness.
Hope this helps.