Just like any part of your car, tires need proper care and maintenance in order to perform as they were intended. Your tires are particularly vulnerable to wear and tear because they are the only part of your car that is making contact with the road as you drive.
However, there is some good news: proper tire maintenance is fairly easy. Be sure that you check these items off your tire care to-do list in order to maximize their lifespan.
Regularly rotating your tires is a crucial aspect of proper tire maintenance. During the process, auto technicians remove each wheel and place it in a different location on the car to make sure that all the tire tread wears evenly.
It is crucial to follow the tire rotation schedule listed in your car owner’s manual. The majority of vehicles should get a tire rotation every 5,000 to 7,000 miles or so.
An experienced auto mechanic will inspect the condition of each tire during the rotation process. Observing and repairing potential causes of uneven tire wear early on can potentially prevent your tires from wearing out before their time. Accelerated tire wear is not just costly, but it can also be very dangerous and impact your safety on the road.
Another pivotal component of tire maintenance is a monthly air pressure check. In order to ensure accurate results, you should use a properly-functioning tire pressure gauge to check the air pressure in the morning before you get behind the wheel. You can check your vehicle’s recommended tire pressure in your owner’s manual or by just checking the sticker that is mounted on the driver-side door.
Under-inflated tires can negatively impact your car’s fuel efficiency, decrease the longevity of your tires, and create the risk of a blowout on the road. Luckily, all cars made since 2007 include a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS). If your car is equipped with TPMS, be sure that your regular service facility has the right training and equipment to service it properly.
At Automobile Repair Shop San Diego, we are always growing in order to accommodate the changing technology in the auto industry. Our auto technicians complete regular training to stay up-to-date on the standards of the industry, and our shops are equipped to work on any kind of TPMS service.
Your tire tread allows your car to grip the road and maintain control while you are driving. If the grooves on your vehicle have become worn, your car will not grip the road properly. In order to test the tread of your tires, you should use the “Quarter Test”:
- Locate the area on your tire with the lowest tread.
- Take a quarter and insert it, headfirst, into the tire tread.
- If you are able to see all of George Washington’s head, your tire tread is at or below 4/32” and must be replaced soon.
Even with proper tire maintenance, falts can still happen. Drivers need to know that there is only one sure-fire way to properly repair a flat tire. Tires that are repaired improperly can lead to blowouts, serious car accidents, and fatal injuries.
Previously, many auto maintenance shops repaired tires with string or fabric-based plugs. It is alarming that this practice is still in use today. It only costs around $10-$15 to plug a tire, and the entire process takes about 10 minutes. This may seem perfect for a car owner looking to save time and money, but if consumers knew of the risks involved, most would understand that it is not worth the risk.
The Correct Way to Repair a Tire
The U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association has clear guidelines concerning the proper method for repairing tires. A trained, qualified auto technician should inspect the tires — inside and out. If the tire can be repaired, it should be patched and plugged from the inside-out, as opposed to just plugged from the outside-in.
It should take roughly 30 minutes to complete a proper tire repair at a cost of $20 to $30. If a tire is unable to be repaired safely, it should be replaced. Paying for a new tire is a much better option than putting yourself, your passengers, and your car at risk.
Quick Tips for Proper Tire Maintenance
Here are some other methods to practice proper tire maintenance:
- Have a trained auto technician balance your wheels every 15,000 miles.
- Have the alignment of your wheels checked once a year to ensure steering control.
- Check your spare tire regularly.
- Tire repairs must be made between the tread shoulders, never on the sidewall.
- Tires can be repaired if there is one pre-existing repair. However, a tire cannot be safely repaired a third time.
- Do not use a tube or sealant to repair tires.
- String/fabric-based plugs should never be used to plug a tire puncture.
- All tire services and repairs must conform to the tire manufacturer’s instructions.
Do You Need a Tire Repair or Replacement?
Bring your car to the Automobile Repair Shop San Diego near you. One of our experienced auto technicians will diagnose your issues and get your vehicle back on the road. Schedule an appointment today.
San Diego Auto Repair Shops
Automobile Repair Shop San Diego is a family-owned and operated business that has been providing the best repair experiences. We will offer you hassle-free auto repairs starting with a precise damage assessment or estimate. We will tow your vehicle for FREE to our shop, organize for a rental car, and work directly with the insurance company to streamline the repair process. We will even pay up to $500 of your deductible. Contact us today to see how we can help.