With all of the publicity potholes are getting these days, you would think drivers would be paying closer attention to the health of their tires. Road conditions in Hampton Roads are abysmal. They take a toll on all of our Checkered Flag driver's tires. So, how can we prepare our tires for the worst?
I think it's time for a little rubber review.
Are you one of our Checkered Flag drivers that wears through tires faster than you get through a tube of toothpaste? Well, you could be having a run of bad tire purchase luck; tires are one of those items where you pay for what you get. However, more likely, it's your own fault! Or, of course, VDOT's.
Sounds harsh, I know, but it is absolutely true that your driving style and vehicle upkeep can have major effects on the longevity of your rubber buddies. If you caught a glimpse of the Drive section of the Virginian Pilot this morning, you've already seen this, but take it in. This is good advice.
How long will a set of tires last?
Source: The Virginian-Pilot newspaper
By BRAD BERGHOLDT
THAT DEPENDS ... on the type of tire, operator driving style, road conditions, how well they're inflated, frequency of wheel rotation, and proper wheel alignment.
1 Tire types and grades
Sticky high-performance tires don't last nearly as long as those with a more utilitarian purpose. Look for the uniform tire quality grade on the tire's printed label or sidewall. The higher the number, the longer the tread is supposed to last. Keep in mind that tire companies self-test their tires. So the tread wear number is good for comparing tires within one manufacturer's line, but isn't as reliable when comparing differing brands.
2 Driving style
A driver with conservative driving habits - gentle stops and starts, gentle on turns - might see a 10- to 30-percent improvement in tire life over a driver who enjoys wringing out the car.
3 Watch the roads
Road conditions matter as well. Rough or winding roads or those with countless stoplights are harder on tires than smooth and straight freeways at reasonable speeds.
4 Check the tire pressure
An underinflated tire is more likely to fail due to overheating. Be sure to use the inflation numbers printed on the door sticker rather than the maximum pressure stamped on the tire's sidewall. Tire pressure should be checked at least monthly. If you're likely to be remiss in doing so, a $20 set of tire pressure indicator caps can be easily installed on the valve stems and visually monitored.
5 Rotate your tires
Periodic tire rotation and proper wheel alignment are also essential for long tire life. Rotating tires at each or every other oil change helps even out wear. If you don't rotate your tires, you may find the front tires will require premature replacement due to cornering wear on the outer edges.
6 Keep them in line
Having a front and, if applicable, rear wheel alignment performed at the time of tire purchase is a good idea. Tires need to run very close to true vertical, and even the slightest amount of pigeon toe scrubs off rubber at an alarming rate.
End of article.
Any of our nine Checkered Flag Maintenance or Service Centers can help you with alignments, tire rotations, balancing, and new tire purchase. Also, all of our parts departments carry tire gauges and other tools that will help you maintain your tire quality. Drive-ins are welcome at all Checkered Flag Virginia Beach Service Centers, but, appointments are recommended for fastest service. Call (757)490-1111 to schedule a service appointment with your Virginia Beach car maintenance locations.