What to Check on Your Car’s Tires – Frugal Novice

What to Check on Your Car’s Tires

This is a sponsored post partnered with Moran St.Clair Chrysler Jeep Dodge. All opinions are honest and are my own.

Things to check for on your car’s tires

Your vehicle’s tires are like your shoes. There’s lots of wear and tear on them, they’re not always clean and shiny, but a definite necessity to get around. And like your shoes, you want to make sure that your car has good, efficient tires. Here are a few things to check for or keep an eye on regarding your tires:

You always need to be aware of the tread condition of your tires. A tire with worn or low treads will not have a good grip on the road, even in the best weather conditions. One thing to check regularly on your car is the depth of the tread on your tires. You can invest in a tire tread measurement tool from your local automotive store to accurately measure the depth. If you don’t have one handy, you can also use a penny to look at the depth (if you place the penny in the grooves of your tires and can see Lincoln’s head unobstructed, it’s most likely time for new tires. Some tires even have a wear indicator in the tread; there is usually a bar across the main trench of the tread, and if it’s the same depth as the tread, it’s probably time to replace.

In addition to the depth of the tread, you need to be aware of how the tread is wearing down across the tire. If your tires seem more bald on the interior or exterior of the tire, and it’s not even across the width of the tire… it’s probably a sign that your vehicle needs its alignment checked. If the tire seems more bald on both edges of the tire, it’s usually a sign that they are under-inflated. On the other hand, if they are more bald in the middle/center of the tire, most likely it’s a sign of overinflation. Keeping your eye on any potential wear spots of your tires is a good way to maximize fuel economy as well as safety.

Another good rule of thumb is to be mindful of the age of your tires. Tires are made of rubber, and over time that rubber can crack and weaken. Be it from extreme heat (or cold, in some instances), or dry conditions, tires will also begin to have weak spots from age. Keeping your tires newer also helps stabilize any potential risks when driving.

Another simple thing to check for is any debris that might be embedded in the tire. Sometimes items such as nails and screws can become lodged in a tire and not cause a leak. This is rare, but spotting any potential leaks in your tire helps make sure you don’t have a blowout when traveling at high speeds on the freeway, and saves you from having to change a flat on a busy road. In addition to the tread, also keep an eye on the sidewalls of your car’s tires. Any wear spots or scuffs from riding up on a curb poses a potential weaker spot that could eventually cause a flat, so be mindful of those as well.

It’s also a great idea to keep a tire pressure gauge in every vehicle you own. Most cars now have indicator lights letting the driver know if any tires are under pressure, but these are never perfect. Weather conditions can give you a false warning, so when in doubt, check it yourself. And also start practicing a good habit of checking each tire visually quickly before each drive.

You’d never want to walk around in shoddy shoes, so use the tips above to keep from driving around on unsafe tires.

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