Tires are considered one of the most important components of a car, and their upkeep is not only a major part of car maintenance, but also part of driver and passenger safety. However, wheels are also susceptible to premature damage and wear, so it’s important to consider a few maintenance tips to keep them in good shape for a long time. Drivers should inspect them regularly for adequate air pressure. An inexpensive rotation can help to maintain tread wear and promote the maximum amount of life. And drivers should also consider that their driving habits may have an impact on the long-term quality of their wheels.
Inspect Air Pressure Regularly
Optimal tire inflation is crucial for achieving longevity and top performance. Also, optimal inflation can help with fuel efficiency. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, an adequate amount of air pressure can improve fuel economy by 3.3 percent.
Experts recommend inspecting air pressure at least once per month and before and after long road trips. A driver should also apply the recommended amount of pressure instead of the maximum amount. If the wheels are underinflated, they’re at risk for irregular wear and require more energy and fuel for the vehicle, as they don’t roll as smoothly and must work harder on the road to compensate. If they are overinflated, it will lead to a harsh driving experience and reduced traction.
Not only is regular inspection beneficial for car maintenance, but it’s also an important part of car and driver safety. According to studies by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, underinflated tires are the leading cause of tire-related crashes.
According to Michelin, drivers should get their tires rotated every 6,000-8,000 miles. Some shops may provide a free rotation when a driver buys their tires all at once; if they don’t, drivers needn’t worry, as this service is usually inexpensive and worth the investment. A person who is mechanically inclined can even perform this task at home with the purchase and use of a hydraulic floor jack.
Many car experts and mechanics would agree that rotation is needed to ensure more uniform tread wear, as wheels tend to wear in different places depending on where they are situated on the car. This will guarantee more consistent performance of the vehicle, and a driver will also get the most out of the wheels’ lives.
Consider Driving and Parking Habits
Many people may forget the main thing they do in a car that determines the integrity of a tire: yes, driving. Not only can being a good driver prevent road accidents and save lives, but it can also help to reduce tread wear and promote longevity of those rubbery wheels.
Since tires are in direct contact with the road, they deal with a tremendous amount of abuse when a person engages in risky driving habits. So if a person doesn’t want to wear out the tread too soon, they can limit the amount of “bad” driving habits such as aggressive driving, speeding, and hard braking.
Drivers should also be mindful of what’s on the road and in parking lots and driveways when they park their vehicles; treads are very susceptible to tears from broken glass, nails, and potholes. For extra measure, a person may also inspect for sharp debris in the treads every once in a while.