Vehicle Maintenance 101 – Tires
Tires are one of the most important parts that contribute to the safety of your vehicle. Having worn and uneven tires can lead to a blowout or loss of vehicle control, especially in wet or icy weather. We want you to be safe and so we want to offer you some easy tips on your tires, Tire Tips I guess we could have called this.
A quick and easy way to check your tire wear is with a tread-depth gauge. If you happen to have one that is easy, if you don’t come see our service department or you can also use a penny. Yep, just place a penny upside down in between the tire tread and if you can see the top of Lincoln’s head, the treads are worn and tire replacement is needed.
Tires also come with tread wear indicators, they are rubber cross sections in the tire tread that appear when the tires only have 2/32” or less of tread remaining. Other trouble signs on your tires are:
- You can see three or more tread wear indicators around the tire
- The tire cord or fabric is showing through the rubber
- The tire tread or sidewall is cracked, cut, or snagged deep enough to show cord or fabric
- The tire has a bulge or split
- The tire has a puncture, cut, or other damage that can’t be repaired correctly
Proper wheel alignment and tire rotation is key to prolonging the life of your tires. If your vehicle is misaligned, it can cause your tires to wear unevenly, and you may experience handling problems such as pulling or abnormal vibration. Consider letting us do a wheel alignment check if there is unusual tire wear or the vehicle is significantly pulling to one side or the other. A tire that is out of balance often affects ride quality and can shorten the life of tires, bearings, shocks, and other suspension components. If the vehicle is vibrating when driving on a smooth road, the tires and wheels may need to be rebalanced.
Check your tires at least once a month when the tires are cold, meaning the vehicle has not been driven for at least three hours or no more than 1 mile. The Tire Information Label located on the inside of your doorframe has the recommended cold tire pressure for your vehicle. Inflation pressure maintenance of tires is critical for overall tire and vehicle performance. Maintaining the correct inflation pressure allows the tire to perform as intended, including for comfort, fuel economy, stopping distance, cornering, traction, tread wear, and noise.