Our Top 5 Tips For Maintaining Your Tires
You really can’t say exactly when your tires will go bad. So many things can affect them, including how and where you drive. But age and wear will eventually catch up with them. There’s a good reason why the replacement passenger tire market was $26 billion in 2020. However, regular maintenance can go a long way toward keeping your wheels longer and safer.
Fortunately, many tasks are simple and don’t require a lot of money or time. Bear in mind that damaged tires can reduce your gas mileage significantly, making the cost of neglecting regular maintenance even higher. It also poses a safety hazard that puts you and your passengers at risk.
Tip #1: Inspect Your Tires Regularly
Nipping problems in the bud is one of the best things you can do for maintaining your tires. Look for signs of damage, especially after you’ve driven on bad roads or through a construction site. The latter is notorious for debris that can easily cause a flat. Other red flags are uneven wear and changes in how your car handles.
Your driving habits can make a significant impact on your tires. If you regularly drive low-maintenance roads, you’ll likely find that they may not last as long. Likewise, potholes can take a toll and may cause other damage to your vehicle. Spinning the tires in mud or snow is another risk factor, especially at high speeds. It increases the risk of a tire blowing out because of the excessive centrifugal force it causes.
Tip #2: Keep Your Tires Inflated
It seems like a no-brainer, but uninflated tires can severely reduce the lifespan of them. You’ll know it’s the case by just looking at them or seeing wear on both sides. Cold temperatures can tap the air pressure, too. You should consult your owner’s manual for the correct PSI. We also suggest checking it before you go on a long trip to play it safe.
Don’t forget the spare, either. Even if you haven’t used it for a while, it’ll still lose pressure just sitting in the trunk. We suggest making checking the air pressure a monthly routine. Combining it with the previous tip is a smart way to stay on top of both things.
Tip #3: Rotate Your Tires Occasionally
The wear on your tires can vary, depending on how you drive and the road conditions. That’s why it’s essential to rotate them every 6,000–8,000 miles. We suggest erring on the low side of this range. Tire rotation can extend their life and improve your driving experience with a better steering response.
Tire rotation can help ensure even wear. That can, in turn, affect how often you need to do other maintenance and how well your ride handles. The scheme varies with the vehicle. We suggest consulting the owner’s manual for this information.
Tip #4: Invest in Tire Covers
If you keep your car outdoors, tire covers are a wise purchase to prevent damage caused by UV radiation. It can cause the materials to crack and rot. That sets up the perfect storm for contaminants to leach inside the openings and speed up their demise. Sunlight can reduce their lifespan, particularly in areas in the American Southwest where there are few cloudy days and more intense UV radiation.
Tip #5: Replace Your Car Tires When It’s Time—and Get the Right Set!
We recommend having a professional exam your tires every year. The average lifespan is about 3-5 years, depending on various factors, including how diligent you are about regular maintenance. When the tread gets below 50%, it’s time to replace them. However, it’s imperative to get the right set for your vehicle, driving habits, and climate. Given their importance, cheaper isn’t always better.
Things you should consider include your typical driving style, whether on highways, in cities, or off-roading. Climate is another critical factor, especially if you live someplace where winters get extremely cold. All-season tires might not be the best choice if you’re regularly dealing with heavy snow. The speed rating is another useful spec, whether you want precision handling or a quiet ride.
Replacing tires is a costly but necessary part of car ownership. Regular maintenance is a smart way to save money and improve your gas mileage. It’s also vital for safety. Inevitably, you get a flat at the worse possible time. By taking care of them, you can reduce the likelihood of getting stranded with an expensive tow. Luckily, simple tasks can make a significant impact on your tires’ lifespan.