Posts Tagged ‘air pressure’

How Can I Make My Tires Last As Long As Possible?

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It’s easy to forget about your tires. But treating them right not only improves your vehicle’s safety and performance, it also saves you money. Below are some things to keep in mind to ensure your tires last as long as possible.

tire close up

Don’t Let Your Tires Become Underinflated

When your tires are just a few pounds light, a flat spot develops where the rubber meets the road. This means a larger surface area of the tire is in contact, which rapidly accelerates tire wear. It affects your gas mileage as well by increasing the friction between the tire and the road.

Check your tire pressure once a month and add a little air as needed to match the tire’s specifications. Most tires lose a pound or two every month.

Check to See that Your Tires Sit Vertically (and Don’t Lean to the Right or Left)

Any good maintenance shop will have a number of hi-tech techniques for checking your tire alignment. But you can do a simple check yourself in your own driveway.

The first thing to look for is the tire’s camber (the degree to which the tire tilts toward or away from the car, i.e. is the tire vertical). If there is any amount of camber, the tread will wear unevenly and you’ll have to replace much sooner. You can tell if there’s a camber on your front tires by standing directly in front of the vehicle (or behind it for rear tires) and determining whether your tires tip in or out.

Make Sure Your Tires Aren’t “Pigeon-Toed”

You can also check what’s called the ‘toe’ of your tires. The front of your tires should be pointed straight ahead, if they are “pigeon-toed” (pointing inward) or splayed outward, your tread will not wear evenly. Pigeon-toed tires often bear a distinctive tread-wear called ‘feathering’ in the industry.

If either your camber or toe seems off, or you see uneven tread-wear, it’s time to get your tires aligned.

Get Your Tires Regurlarly Rotated

All four of your tires wear a little differently. In front-wheel drive cars, the front tires wear out much faster than the backs, and vice versa. Passenger side versus driver side can make a huge difference as well, due to differing frequencies in left and right turns. Most manufacturers recommend rotating your tires every 6,000 to 8,000 miles to distribute wear evenly. To make remembering this easy, have your tires rotated at every other oil change.

Got more questions tire-related questions? Give Discount Tire Centers a call! We’re you’re number one choice for tires in West Los Angeles and the entire southern California region!

Photo courtesy of Steve Garner.

 

Tire FAQ: How Can I Tell if My Tires’ Air Pressure is Correct?

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Tires are a really important part of your vehicle – no other part suffers so much wear or deserves such regular attention. But how often do you check your tire pressure really? Maybe it’s time to take another look, and here’s how:

little boy and giant tire

 

Three Possibilities: Over, Under, Correct

There are really only three possible pressures for a tire: overinflated, underinflated, and correctly inflated. Of course this is a matter of degrees, and perfection in anything is difficult to maintain constantly, but you owe it to yourself to try and keep your car’s tires properly inflated.

Underinflated tires become flatter, and and just 6psi beneath recommendations can lead to tire failure. It’s also hard on the tire’s life, and who wants to have to purchase a new set of tires earlier rather than later? Overinflated tires, on the other hand, put your tire in more danger of becoming damaged by a pothole or other road hazard. It also means a harsher ride.

Why Check?

Not only does having the correct tire pressure improve the way your vehicle handles, you’ll also improve your gas mileage. That’s good for your pocketbook and the environment.

How To?

So how do you know your tires are properly inflated? You go by look alone. Take them in to a professional or check yourself using a high quality pressure gauge. This little step will give you peace of mind and keep your tires happy for miles to come.

 Time to have your tires checked and maybe get a set of new tires in Santa Monica? Visit Discount Tire Centers! And leave us a comment: how do you make sure your tires are always properly pressurized? How often do you check? Maybe it’s time to check now…