Car tires can definitely cause a lot of problems, especially if they aren’t taken care of properly. You are probably confident about the treatment you are giving your tires. But, are you sure it’s right?
Firstly, they are needed for car mobility, but if preserved properly, the tires won’t make you wonder about your safety. Taking care of your tires is equivalent to being safe and sound on the road. There may be an average lifetime of car tires, but it depends on several parameters, and you may not be aware of them.
For even more information on tire-care, head over to our informative guide— 10 Tips For Storing Car Tires.
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1. Clean Tires
Believe it or not, one of the parameters that can damage your tires is dirt. It will make a chain reaction, and every other link in the chain will be other dirt. Lubricants in the rubber compound in the tires, that are meant to protect them, can be gone during the time if the tires aren’t clean. Dirt will corrode the rubber.
One of the problems many drivers aren’t aware of is taking care of tires when they are in storage. Not using tires doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make sure they are protected. The winter actually is a very dangerous season for your tires. During that period, the tires will accumulate a lot of dirt and possibly end up damaged.
When cleaning the tires, check the chemical structure of the tire conditioner. You should avoid silicone, solvents, alcohol or petroleum base because these compounds can cause cracking. Use tire conditioner with UV protection.
For the ultimate guide on up-keeping your car’s maintenance, be sure to read up on our article, Definitive Guide to Proper Car Maintenance.
2. Check the Air Pressure
There is a recommended level of inflation, and you should be checking it occasionally. Don’t be lazy – check it every month. This time interval is considered the most adequate because tires are losing about two pounds of pressure monthly.
Check the air pressure in tires before the car has been driven on that day. A few miles on the road can heat the air in the tires and make them expand, which will give you incorrect information about the inflation.
One more tip about the air pressure is to increase it inside each tire by 25% when tires are not in use and switch it back to normal before the new season starts.
3. Proper Storing
When it comes to extending the life of car tires, it also makes sense to talk about proper care and protection while you are not using the tires. When not in use, the tires should be in a place that is cold, dry, clean, sunless and ozone free. Ozone is characteristic of machines with high voltage and high electrical use, so make sure they are not near to the storage.
Do not be tricked by the low temperatures in the winter – it doesn’t mean the UV rays are less harmful! UV rays and ozone are a common cause of fragile tires because exposing to them will change the tire structure, so protection from sun rays and ozone is at the same time the protection from a problem known as dry rotting. High temperatures, as well as low, can negatively affect tire rubber.
Furthermore, if you don’t have proper storage, and you choose to store the tires outside (which is not recommended), make sure the tires aren’t touching the storage surface and that they are covered.
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4. Wear Bars
First of all, the tires shouldn’t be “too old” – make sure they are not worn out. Do not wait for a flat tire on the road to change it. Tread marks are actually fillisters on the rubber, and the rubber in them should be completely hollowed out. When the wear become more visible, prepare yourself for replacing the rubber.
When the winter season is on, you may consider visiting the mechanic to check the tread marks, because the rubber in winter tires is a bit different, so it’s more complicated to do the check by yourself.
5. Tire Rotation
Rotating your tires is meant to spread the stress evenly to all of the tires on your car. This process is done because the tires are usually unevenly worn out. It is done by moving the tires and wheels from one position to another. As recommended, you should do the rotation every 5,000 miles.
It sounds frightening, but not rotating your tires can lead to unsafe driving, especially during the winter. Find the best mechanic you can, that will be dedicated to your car completely, and don’t be close-fisted. Sloppy checks and repairs can cause a lot of serious problems.
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6. Drive Safely
The talk about safety on the road is never-ending. But, since we are talking about the tires, there are some safety measures for them too. Firstly, as hard or logic as it sounds, pick safe and well-built roads. Huge bumps, holes, and sidewalks in contact with the tires can affect their alignment, especially if you are driving too fast. So, the speed factor is double-natured when it comes to safety.
If the tire runs into a defection on the road, it can be moved to one side, which is not the position of the tire that is predicted. The tire surface area should be equally spread in contact with the road, and that is exactly the job of alignment. If the alignment is threatened, one part of the tire will put up with more friction, which directly affects the lifetime of the tire.
Most of the drivers believe they are doing the right job when it comes to taking care of car tires. But, the tires are often neglected, and not taken seriously. This issue can cause a lot of repairs, their costs, and especially endangered ride.
Taking care of your tires doesn’t mean waiting for them to become dry, fragile, flat or damaged. Introduce yourself with standards and recommendations for maintenance of the tires, well known in the car industry, so you can keep the tires roadworthy for a long time. Keep them clean, inflated, stored properly, aligned and compatible with your car.
You probably already have the needed knowledge when it comes to your car and it’s parts. But, it’s not bad to consult the mechanic about all the details. Taking care of the tires means taking care of all the passengers in your car.