Top Five Useful Tips for Tire Maintenance August 12th, 2011
Taking good care of your tires does not have to be difficult or time consuming. By following these tips, you can ensure safe performance, top mileage and longer tire life for your car.
1. Check the tire pressure
It is essential to check tire pressures at least once a month. There are several places you can find the correct pressure level for your vehicle: the vehicle’s owner manual, inside the gas tank lid, the driver’s side doorframe and on the door post.
Remember the air pressure listed on the side of your tire is not the correct air pressure, but the maximum level for your car. Check the air pressure when the tire is cold because the pressure is highly affected by temperature.
After removing the valve cap, press a tire gauge into the valve and read the gauge. If you find your tire is overinflated, push on the metal stem of the valve and release the air. If the pressure is underinflated, add air until the pressure reaches the proper level. Finally, make sure to close the valve cap tightly to prevent leaking and damage from dirt.
2. Check the tread depth
Worn down tire tread is more likely to cause a sliding accident and lower the traction of your car. It is recommended to replace your tires before the treads get less than 1/16 of an inch.
Using “wear bars,” or built-in tread wear indicators, is a good way to determine tread depth. If you see these narrow strips of smooth rubber, you should replace the tires.
3. Store the tires in proper conditions
It is very important to keep tires in the right place. To prevent changes in the tire rubber, you should avoid storing tires in a place where the temperature is above 77 ºF or below 32 ºF. It is also necessary to keep your tires away from any form of oils or solvents. Tires should also be kept away from ozone-producing equipment, such as fluorescence lamps, as ozone has a very strong deteriorating effect on tires.
4. Rotate your tires regularly
Regular tire rotation will help to get uniform wear on all your tires. To avoid irregular tire wear, you should rotate tires every 6,000 – 8,000 miles or as specified in the vehicle’s owner manual.
5. Replace the tires
When you replace your tires, it is important to use the tires with the same size, type and speed rating that originally came on the vehicle.
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