Top Five Tire Care Tips from AutoMD.com
1. Keep tires properly inflated.
Get into the habit of looking at your tires every time you stop for gas. If you spot bulging sidewalls during a visual inspection, this could indicate low tire pressure. You should also check the tire pressure once a month with a pressure gauge. On vehicles equipped with a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), the warning light on the dash notifies you when a tire is low. Be sure to refer to your vehicle's owner's manual or tire sticker on the door jamb for manufacturer-recommended tire pressure settings. Be especially diligent about tire pressure when driving in snow, rain and sleet, since correct pressure is essential to good handling and traction.
See AutoMD’s guide: How to Check Tire Pressure: http://www.automd.com/15/how-to-check-tire-pressure/
2. Rotate and balance tires every other oil change.
AutoMD.com recommends that you rotate and balance your tires every other oil change (7,000 – 10,000 miles). Most tire shops offer this service free-of-charge if the tires were purchased from them. Rotating your tires increases their lifespan because the front tires wear faster than the rear, and keeping the tires balanced reduces vibration.
See AutoMD’s guide: How to Rotate Tires: http://www.automd.com/185/how-to-rotate-tires/
See AutoMD’s guide: How to Balance Tires: http://www.automd.com/142/how-to-balance-a-tire-and-wheel/
3. Avoid road hazards.
Driving too fast, not keeping a safe distance, and driving on rough or damaged roads can lead to tire damage from road hazards. Hitting a pothole at forty miles per hour can cause tire and wheel trauma, including sidewall damage which is non-repairable. Be careful after heavy rains or inclement weather when new potholes typically appear. Whenever possible, drive on well-maintained roads.
4. Routinely check your tires for uneven wear.
A tire wearing on the outside edge can be a sign that the wheels are not aligned. Wheel alignment can be checked by simply looking at the wear pattern on tires or by a trained technician with the use of an alignment rack. Misalignment (camber and toe-in) can reduce the life of your tires, so be sure to routinely inspect for uneven tread wear. If the tires are wearing unevenly, have the wheels aligned by a trained technician.
See AutoMD’s guide: How to Perform a Wheel Alignment: http://www.automd.com/8/how-to-perform-a-wheel-alignment/
5. Clean and cover your tires.
Use a tire protectant to prevent the tires from UV or ozone damage in the summer and harsh weather conditions in the winter. Be sure to clean tire sidewalls with Armor All® or a similar product. Whenever your vehicle is stored for long periods of time (i.e., a trailer or classic car), cover your tires and remove the vehicle’s weight or load to help prevent sidewall cracks from forming.
Keep in mind that tire lifespan is affected by the quality of your tires, tire maintenance, type of vehicle, and driving habits.
For motorists who want tips about how to inspect or repair their tires on-the-go, AutoMD Mobile offers "How-To Guides" and a Repair Shop Locator at http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/automd-mobile/id369361977?mt=8
For the full release on tire care tips, click here: http://www.automd.com/About-AutoMD/Press/01-25-2011/
More AutoMD.com vehicle maintenance tips can be found at: http://www.automd.com/About-AutoMD/Press/12-14-2010/
AutoMD.com™ (www.automd.com), a wholly-owned subsidiary of US Auto Parts Network, Inc., (Nasdaq:PRTS), is the most comprehensive and unbiased free online automotive repair resource designed to empower car owners with the best way to repair their vehicles. Backed by a team of automotive data specialists and certified auto mechanics who are advocates for the car owner, AutoMD.com allows both car owners and DIYers to 1. Troubleshoot car problems, 2. Get accurate auto repair estimates, 3. Understand the steps needed and the time it should take for repairs with online Auto Repair manuals, 4. Find the right local auto repair shop at the right price, and 5. Get auto repair questions answered by the AutoMD.com community. AutoMD.com was named Best Automotive Website in the 8th annual American Business Awards, also known as the as the Stevie® Awards. AutoMD Mobile is available for the iPhone at http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/automd-mobile/id369361977?mt=8.
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