Knowing When to Replace Your Tires

Many people assume their tires are in good working condition until one goes flat or they have a blowout. Determining if yours need to be replaced before it’s too late is an important issue for all drivers. Without periodic replacement, your tires can become extremely dangerous if they are neglected for too long.

New tires come with a mileage recommendation that is a manufacturers suggestion of the life of the tire. In ideal driving conditions, an average can expect theirs to last around 50,000 miles. However, you must inspect your tires often to ensure they are displaying the normal amount of wear.

One way to perform this inspection is by taking a look at the wear indicators that are present on the side of the tire. These indicators are little pieces of rubber that stick out. If there are no indicators present, it is time to shop for replacements. Next, check the tread. The tread is the grooves on the tire. It comes in contact with the road and needs to be deep enough to push water out of the way and give your tires the most amount of contact with the road surface. If the tread looks worn or the grooves are no longer deep enough or non-existent, it is imperative that you make plans for replacements immediately. Tires with little or no tread can be extremely dangerous, especially in wet conditions. Hydroplaning will occur if the tire cannot make direct contact with the pavement. When your car is riding on a thin layer of water without adequate tread it cannot grip the road and you will have no control over the vehicle.

While you are checking the treads, make sure you look for uneven wear. Uneven tread wear means that the tires are improperly aligned. If certain parts of the tire are not making contact with the pavement, they will wear unevenly and cause the car to be shaky or make loud noises when driving. Have a professional automotive shop replace your tires and check the alignment.

Also be sure to check the air pressure frequently. If the air pressure is not maintaining a steady level, there may be a leak. Consistent leakage is an indication that you will need a new tire. Slow leakage may be a sign that there is internal damage, which is more likely to cause a blowout when traveling at high speeds.

Bubbles or bulges in the tire means that the tire has a weak spot and cannot maintain a steady pressure. These must also be replaced immediately, as their integrity is compromised and continuing to travel on them may result in a dangerous blowout.

Periodically inspecting your vehicle’s tires will give you adequate time to fix potential problems. Keep updated maintenance records so you know when you have reached the maximum mileage and be sure to inspect tread wear throughout the life of the tire. You’ll be less likely to experience a hazardous blowout on the highway if you keep up with routine maintenance, inspections and replacement. More info

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