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#4497064 - 08/24/17 02:46 PM Where did 32 PSI come from?
grampi Online   content


Registered: 10/08/06
Posts: 7771
Loc: OH
This seems to be the age old standard pressure for car tires, but it seems like every vehicle requires a different PSI, so I'm wondering where this came from. Did everyone just inflate their tires on all vehicles back in the old days?

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#4497069 - 08/24/17 02:52 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: grampi]
CKN Offline


Registered: 10/14/14
Posts: 3709
Loc: Utah
Didn't they use to check your tire pressure when you got fuel-back in the day?


Edited by CKN (08/24/17 02:53 PM)

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#4497077 - 08/24/17 03:02 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: grampi]
Bgallagher Offline


Registered: 04/17/12
Posts: 3159
Loc: Boston, MA
I always figured it was a middle of the road number for the average car tire.
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#4497078 - 08/24/17 03:03 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: grampi]
Eddie Online   sleepy


Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 9579
Loc: Florida, Cape Coral
Probably is the pressure that reflects the pressure recommended loading for the manufactures chosen tire, except the older Ford Explorer where the PR people got control. Ed
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#4497082 - 08/24/17 03:07 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: grampi]
OneEyeJack Offline


Registered: 09/14/10
Posts: 7480
Loc: S California
In the old days when people actually survived without cell phones but still had electricity and self-starting cars, they had places for you to gas up called "service stations". You drove and ran over a hose that rang a bell. I human would come to your car and you would say something like fill it up with Ethyl and that's what the attendant would do along with checking your engine oil level, fan belt(s), radiator, P/S fluid, windshield washer fluid and tire pressure. No, honest it's true.

The 32 psi bit? It's better than 10-20 psi that was noticed when Ford Exploders were having tire problems. If you can't be bothered checking tire pressures than 32 psi by someone else it better than your method.

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#4497105 - 08/24/17 03:39 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: grampi]
Eddie Online   sleepy


Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 9579
Loc: Florida, Cape Coral
I was one of those guys who, when the bell rang, ran to your vehicle and asked how much gas, wiped your windshield and checked your oil. I waited for the tip but, it very seldom happened.. WARCO STATION in Rock Island ILL ~1955. Ed
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#4497114 - 08/24/17 03:47 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: OneEyeJack]
Malo83 Offline


Registered: 08/08/08
Posts: 2005
Loc: Cali
Originally Posted By: OneEyeJack
In the old days when people actually survived without cell phones but still had electricity and self-starting cars, they had places for you to gas up called "service stations". You drove and ran over a hose that rang a bell. I human would come to your car and you would say something like fill it up with Ethyl and that's what the attendant would do along with checking your engine oil level, fan belt(s), radiator, P/S fluid, windshield washer fluid and tire pressure. No, honest it's true.

The 32 psi bit? It's better than 10-20 psi that was noticed when Ford Exploders were having tire problems. If you can't be bothered checking tire pressures than 32 psi by someone else it better than your method.

And the gas pumps would ring for every gallon and on the side of the pump was a see thru bubble with little balls that would swirl around as the gas would flow thru, gas was 15/25 cents depending on the grade, loved when we would pull into the station and the smell of gas would greet you, mom would go to a certain station and collect stamps to redeem for silverware or dishware, you were greeted with a Yes Ma'm or Yes Sir. Those were honestly the "The Good Ole Days. cheers

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#4497115 - 08/24/17 03:48 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: grampi]
AZjeff Offline


Registered: 01/14/11
Posts: 2656
Loc: PV Az
What does all this reminiscing about the good old days have to do with the question why was 32 psi a fairly universal inflation number back in the good old days?? Good question.

Bunch of dang geezers....

Full disclosure, I worked in an ARCO service station in the early 70s... and every once in a while destroyed a can of oil stabbing the spout in.
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Why know when you can guess?!


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#4497152 - 08/24/17 04:43 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: grampi]
BigD1 Offline


Registered: 08/12/15
Posts: 2575
Loc: NC
Not sure where it come from, but that was what we filled them at the full service station I was working at during the 70's oil embargo.
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1992 Toyota Pickup--Havoline HM 10W-30--Motorcraft FL-910S

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#4497175 - 08/24/17 05:18 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: grampi]
CR94 Offline


Registered: 03/20/16
Posts: 1120
Loc: Western S.C. since 1996
There never was anything special about 32 psig. Back in those "good ole days" that the "geezers" recall, the most common pressure recommendation by car manufacturers was 24 psi. My father thought that was too low and wanted 30 in everything.
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#4497176 - 08/24/17 05:18 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: grampi]
wheelman1991 Offline


Registered: 06/22/16
Posts: 92
Loc: Watertown, NY USA
32 psi? Because that was what the recommended pressure was on the sidewall off bias ply tires.
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1999 Toyota Camry, 1MZ-FE v6 ,5-speed, 305k miles. Project car.

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#4497180 - 08/24/17 05:21 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: grampi]
CapriRacer Online   content


Registered: 02/22/03
Posts: 3372
Loc: Somewhere in the US
Originally Posted By: grampi
This seems to be the age old standard pressure for car tires, but it seems like every vehicle requires a different PSI, so I'm wondering where this came from. Did everyone just inflate their tires on all vehicles back in the old days?


Because the tires that preceeded the current P metric radials had 32 psi as the max - and a lot of people went by what was on the tire (kind of like now!). Please note: Placards were a new thing in that era.
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CapriRacer

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#4497308 - 08/24/17 08:27 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: grampi]
oilpsi2high Offline


Registered: 12/18/14
Posts: 1332
Loc: NY, USA, etc.
The engineers decided that it was the best pressure for handling, comfort, and wear.

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#4497334 - 08/24/17 09:03 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: wheelman1991]
BrocLuno Offline


Registered: 09/06/15
Posts: 5528
Loc: Kalifornia Kollective
Originally Posted By: wheelman1991
32 psi? Because that was what the recommended pressure was on the sidewall off bias ply tires.


Bingo, it was all about bias ply construction and the upper working limit. When 32 was the standard, no one in the USA knew much about radials. Michelin had not made the scene, much less Sears big push ...
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Formerly in marine engineering. In an earlier life I owned my own petroleum tank truck, and hauled for the majors and independent's.

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#4497375 - 08/24/17 09:59 PM Re: Where did 32 PSI come from? [Re: grampi]
Merkava_4 Offline


Registered: 01/30/07
Posts: 17501
Loc: Clovis, CA
I like mine at 36, that way it gives me room for air loss.

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