There are few car features that are as important to the lifespan of your vehicle and your personal safety as your tires. Keeping up with necessary tire repair services is a good way to keep your car in good shape. Good tire maintenance habits is also a key factor in your vehicle getting optimum fuel efficiency. Most importantly, making sure your tires are in good shape in critical for ensuring you and your passengers are safe while driving at high speeds. Blown tires is one of the leading causes of car wrecks that are not due to driving errors.
The most important way to keep your tires in good shape is by taking your car to your local tire shop for routine maintenance on a regular basis. For your convenience, we’ve listed a few important maintenance tasks that your tire shop can provide for you.
Four Important Maintenance Tasks Your Tire Shop Will Take Care of
- Aligning your vehicle.
If your tires are not aligned properly, it causes them to wear out unevenly. As your uneven tires wear out, you will have to make up for your car’s natural tendency to pull in one direction by over-steering (to constantly pull it back into the right direction), which burns fuel faster than necessary. Also, the uneven wearing of the tires cause part of the tire’s traction to completely wear out quickly, which puts you at an elevated risk of incurring a dangerous blow out on the road.
How often? You should take your car into a tire shop for an alignment when you get new tires and anytime you make changes to the suspension on your vehicle.
- Maintaining proper tire pressure.
If your tires are under-inflated or over-inflated, it contributes to the tires wearing out faster. New tires can be extremely expensive, but this is not the only way that it costs you. Driving a car that have tires without proper pressure significantly impacts your car’s fuel economy and leads to hundreds of dollars in unnecessary fuel costs. Additionally, it can lead to blowouts that could be life threatening.
How often? Check your tire pressure once a month and make sure that it filled to your manufacturer’s specifications (this can be found on the little chart inside your door jam or in the glove compartment). If you have aftermarket tires and are unsure of the correct tire pressure for your types of tires, take it into a tire shop and have a professional check it out.
- Rotate your tires regularly.
Your driving habits tend to be repetitive, which puts more wear on some parts of your tires than others. Over time, the part of your tires that take the greatest beating wear out, requiring you to replace them faster than necessary. You can dramatically improve the lifespan of your expensive tires by rotating them on a regular basis. This distributes the wear and tear that your tires get over time, and extends the life you get from them.
How often? Your vehicle manufacturer will have specific guidelines for rotating your tires. In most cases, you can get away with rotating them every 5,000 miles.
- Balance your tires.
If your tires are not balanced, the uneven weight in the wheel’s turning cycle will cause it to vibrate when you drive at high speeds. This wears your tire out, causes drag that impacts your fuel economy, and can damage the vehicle itself. When you have the tires balanced, your tire shop checks to make sure the weight of the tire is evenly distributed, and contributes to a smooth drive.
How often? You will need to have your tires balanced every time they are replaced. Otherwise, take it in to your tire shop any time you feel that vibration that indicates they have gotten out of balance again.
We know that you have a lot going on in your life, and keeping up with tire maintenance might feel like a low priority. However, skimping on taking care of your tires burns your gas faster, wears out your tires quickly, could potentially damage your vehicle, or — most importantly — could actually put your life in danger.