There are many different parts of your vehicle that play a role in how safe it is to operate, and of those, the tires are perhaps the most important. Considering the tires are all that stand between your vehicle and the road, it’s important you make sure you always have tire safety in mind when performing vehicle maintenance and when analyzing your driving practices.
With this in mind, here are some tips from an auto repair shop in Corpus Christi, TX to help you ensure proper tire safety at all times:
- Check your tire pressure at least once a month: One of the most common causes of tire-related crashes is underinflated tires, according to studies conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). This is an especially common problem in colder weather, as every 10 degree drop in temperature comes with a loss of one psi of air pressure. Underinflated tires can result in worse fuel economy, more difficult vehicle handling and uneven tread wear along the outer edges. Therefore, if you know you have air pressure issues, make sure you fill up your tires as soon as possible to avoid doing any damage to the tires or getting yourself into an accident.
- Inspect tires for damage or wear: You should give your tires a quick visual inspection once a month or so, and before you take any long trip. Check for excessive or uneven tread wear, any cracks or bulges that might exist on the tread or sidewalls, any signs of punctures or foreign objects that might have become lodged in the tire or any other signs that the tire has been damaged somehow.
- Rotate: As a general rule you should rotate your tires every 6,000 miles or so, though your vehicle may have some specifications outlined in the manual. Tire rotation is important to ensure you achieve even tread wear and to help you maximize your tread life. Follow cross-rotation patterns—always move the left front tire to the right rear, the right front tire to the left rear, etc.
- Maintain proper steering and suspension alignment: Misalignment of suspension or steering systems, either in the front or the rear of the vehicle, can have adverse effects on the tires as well, as the tires will start to wear in an uneven fashion if there are alignment problems. If you don’t correct these issues, the misalignment can ruin the tires very quickly, which means you’ll then have to both fix the alignment and get new tires.
- Don’t overload your tires: Overloading is another one of the leading causes of tire failures. Every tire has a specified maximum load range. This range will be printed on the same label that indicates the recommended tire pressure. Make sure you do not exceed those load ranges—otherwise, you’ll run into a variety of problems, including potential tire failure.
For more information about tire safety, contact the team at Coastal Diesel Injection or visit our auto repair shop in Corpus Christi, TX today!