The tires are one of the most important components of a car. It is the only point of contact between a car and the road, and responsible for functions like transmission of power, application of brakes, deriving fuel efficiency, and implementing steering inputs. No wonder, tires get subjected to a lot of wear and tear during the lifetime of a car and require special attention for the smooth working of the vehicle. We list out some of the tips that you should follow to maximize the life of your vehicle’s tires.
1) Avoid Under and Over-inflation: Normally a set of tires have a life of around 70,000-80,000 kilometers although no one can deny the role of driving style in deciding their life term. One time tested rule in order to have a longer tire life is to avoid both under-inflation and over-inflation. In case of the under-inflated tires, the sides of tires wear faster than the middle portion while in case of over-inflated tires; middle-section becomes weaker than the sides. Both situations are undesirable and reduce the overall life of the tire. It is recommended that you read the owner’s manual to follow the recommended tire pressure suggested by your car maker that, in turn, will help you to maximize the life of your tires. In addition to stretching life, maintaining the correct air pressure will also help you to attain higher fuel efficiency from your car.
2) Regular Wheel Alignment: One of the most common reasons behind the uneven tread is the wrong wheel alignment in cars. Wheels of the car can be misaligned due to a number of reasons and it is recommended that after every 10,000 kilometers you should go for the wheel alignment process. During the wheel alignment, three critical things related to the alignment are checked - caster (the parameter concerned with the slope of the steering axis), camber (the parameter which defines the inward or outward tilt of the car), and toe (the parameter which is concerned with the measurement of side to side difference between front and rear of front tires). All these parameters are taken care of in the process of wheel alignment and have a profound impact on the overall life cycle of tires. The authorized service stations check the wheel alignment during the service process and hence, you need not visit the dealership especially for the wheel alignment until and unless the situation warrants.
3) Suspension System Failure: A faulty or damaged suspension system can also potentially reduce the life of your car’s tires. Due to the suspension failure, the sides of the tires will wear faster than the middle portion, thereby leading to uneven tread. If you find one side of the tire is wearing faster than the other side then this might be the case of damaged suspension which you should rectify by visiting the authorized dealership. Not only it will help to extend the tires life but also save the other critical components of the engine and transmission from further damage.
4) Rotate the Tires: It is recommended that after every 10,000 kilometers, you should rotate the tires - front tires should be shifted to the back and back ones should be moved to the front. This rotational policy will help tires to have even spread and there won’t be an issue of uneven wear on the wheels. As all the four different tires are subjected to different conditions, this rotation will help them to wear in a steadfast manner and more importantly, in an even manner. The same policy applies for the spare-wheel which should be used as a regular tire from time to time.
Follow these simple and easy things to increase the life of your car’s tires and enjoy a great drive.