Car Care Guide: Wheels and Tires
Fancy rims aren’t that great.
That is if they’re a distraction from some bigger issues with your wheels or tires. Don’t forget that your tires are one of the most important points of defense between you and the road.
That means it’s important that you take care of your wheels and tires properly. Here’s what you need to know.
Why do tires and wheels need service?
The quality of your tires is a safety issue, but that’s not all. It also affects handling, traction, and the comfort of your ride.
Maintaining your tires and wheel alignment reduces wear, improves handling, and makes your vehicle more fuel-efficient. You’ll know it’s time to change your tires when the tread depth is lower than 4/32”. An easy way to tell is to stick a penny head-down in-between the treads. If the top of Abe’s head is visible, your tread is too low.
A puncture or crack in the sidewall also means it’s time for new tires. Normal wear and road conditions can affect your car’s steering and suspension system over time, as well as cause the alignment to be off.
Wheel and tire service: what you can expect
These are the types of services your mechanic will want to perform to keep your wheels and tires in good condition – and a few things you can do on your own.
- Alignment. All four wheels’ alignment should be checked at least once a year, as well as at any sign of uneven tread wear or irregular handling. You should request an alignment any time you get new tires.
- Tire pressure. Check your tire pressure at least once a month. You should check it even more frequently in cold weather. Don’t forget your spare!
- Rotation. Have your tires rotated every 6,000 miles. Your mechanic and/or your owner’s manual will have the correct information about the correct rotation pattern. Tire rotation is an important service for four-wheel-drive vehicles. It’s also best to replace all four tires at once.
- Tire Pressure Monitoring System. If your vehicle has a Tire Pressure Monitoring System, it will probably need to be reset each time your tires are changed or serviced.
- Wheel balance. Have your wheels balanced. When you’re tires are being rotated, it’s the perfect time to have them balanced, as well. When your wheels are unbalanced, your car’s struts and shock absorbers can wear more quickly than they should.
Trust your wheels and tires to professionals
At Conrad’s, you can count on our skilled auto technicians to give your vehicle service you can trust. Conrad’s Tire Express carries a full range of brands so you can be in and out in no time.