Tires are probably the most important item on your vehicle, and regular maintenance is essential to ensure you get a long life out of them. There are a number of factors that can make your tires start to wear, and if you know the signs, and how to check your tires properly before it is too late, you could save yourself some money, and more importantly, the lives of your family and other motorists.
Tires are often the most neglected items on our vehicles, but we should take excellent care of them, because our lives depend on them. What are the 5 main ways to tell if you need new tires?
Tire tread is designed to disperse water giving the tyre grip the road. The channels in the rubber are intended to allow water to be expelled from underneath the tire to prevent hydro-planing. Without tread, your tire’s capability to grip on wet roads is limited, which makes it virtually impossible to stop, turn, accelerate or corner correctly. The amount of rubber to air space on the street surface affects the traction. Tires also have wear limit gauges in the form of small raised bumps in the channels. When the tread is worn enough that the indicators touch the road, the tire is ready to be replaced.
Standard Wear and Tear
Your tires can be damaged or worn from a range of different things. The road surface you normally drive on will have a big impact on the wear and tear of your tires. Gravel roads often have large or sharp rocks that can take chunks out of your tread without you knowing, and other items like nails or screws are common ways to create premature issues. The weather plays a big role as well in the wear and tear of tires. Extreme heat and ice can affect tire pressure, which if not noticed, can wear your tires without you knowing.
Tires Deflating Irregularly
On average tires will naturally deflate around 1 PSI per month in normal conditions. If your tires deflate at a quicker rate to this, you should have them tested, as you may have a slow leak or faulty valve. Because extreme weather can change the tire pressure quickly, if you live in an area where the weather can change quite rapidly, then you should check pressure every week to ensure they are at the required PSI.
Changed Ride Quality
If you notice that your car’s handling feels a little different o normal, like your steering feels floaty, or bouncy, it can mean that your tires are either under pressure, or unevenly starting to wear. Another way to tell through your ride quality if your tires are on their way out is I you feel a vibration in your steering wheel that wasn’t there before. This can often mean there are uneven spots on your tires, like bubbles or bulges that may have been caused by gutter scrapes, damaged from an impact or driving over uneven surfaces.
Although tires don’t come with an expiry date, depending on how much use your vehicle gets, your tires should be replaced at least once every 5 years, however they can last up to ten years, but become less reliable with age. Unfortunately the older the tires get, the less safe they become, especially if they have had extended time in the sun or snow.
We hope this article helped. Give us a call if you need any further advice.