What if I Have Mismatched Tires?


As a general rule, your tires should all have the same tread pattern, construction and size, meaning they should all be the same make, model and age. If they aren’t, you’ll compromise on your car’s control, traction, stability and ride. Mismatched tires could mean tires from different manufacturers, winter tires with all-season tires, run-flat tires with conventional tires or tires with different tread patterns.

Until you can invest in an entire set of tires of the same make and model, and if you’ve only got one mismatched tire in the set, you should put it on the rear. If the tire that had a problem was on the front, take one of your rears and put it on the front to replace it, then put the mismatch tire back on the rear axle. This will probably mean the least impact on handling ...[more]

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How Different Tread Works


Surely you’ve noticed the wide range of tread patterns and styles available between different tire brands and models. Here’s a brief technical breakdown of how they all work: 

  • Tread patterns: Tires are commonly designed with symmetrical, asymmetrical and directional tread patterns. Symmetrical treads are the most common, with ribs or tread blocks where the inboard and outboard sections of the tire come together and match. Asymmetrical tread patterns vary the groove pattern of the tire to help deflect water and snow in all-season conditions, making them a good pick for year-round use. The grooves on directional tires form a V shape at the tire’s center, helping to displace water and avoid hydroplaning. The geometry of the tread blocks and tread pattern is designed to fulfill very dedicated, s ...[more]

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How to Check Tread on Tires


Tread depth is crucial to your safety! Once the tires on your car get below a certain minimum tread depth, your steering, handling and traction are compromised seriously enough that your car is considered unsafe to drive. Most states cite 2/32” as a minimum tread depth, but the truth is that your traction in wet weather or snow can be treacherous long before the tread makes it to 2/32”.
Most tire brands have “wear bars” embedded in the tread grooves, at a right angle to the tread. Once the wear bars start to show through, it’s definitely time to replace the tires.

The oldest rule-of-thumb test is the “Lincoln head penny” test – insert a penny into the tread, with Lincoln’s head pointed down. If the tread doesn’t come to the top ...[more]

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Tire Safety Tips


Tires are something that many drivers take for granted…but they shouldn’t. Tires are as big a part of your car’s overall safety as anything else. These are all things to keep in mind when it comes to tire safety:

  • Proper inflation – Underinflated tires will cost you money in premature tread wear and increased rolling resistance (which means a hit on your gas mileage). Worse than that, though, underinflated tires will compromise your vehicle’s handling and steering, and can dangerously overheat on hot days or long trips. Modern radial tires won’t begin to show signs of deforming until they are at least 30% low on pressure, so just eyeballing a tire won’t tell you if it’s underinflated. Rubber is porous and even brand-new tires lose air, so make a poi ...[more]

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When to Get New Tires


When to Get New Tires

You may be wondering when you should get new tires…they are a big investment and you don’t want to jump the gun, right? You also don’t want to push your luck with tires that are worn-out and running on borrowed time. Here are some tips:

  • Run your hands along the surface of the tires. Feel for any irregularities like unevenly-worn spots or a rippled edge to the tread (also called “feathering”). These are indicators of suspension or steering issues that can contribute to tire wear, or an indicator of tires that haven’t been rotated frequently enough. Feel for any tread separation or possible bulges or cracks in the tread surface. If you detect problems like that, the tire is in imminent danger of failure and needs to be replaced right awa ...[more]

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Cooper Tires Ratings - What They Mean


The process of selecting new tires for a vehicle can seem complicated. While recommendations are provided regarding the appropriate tire size, the brand and the type of tire can make a difference in the amount of traction and the usefulness of the tires. By understanding the meaning of Cooper Tires ratings, it is possible to select the best tire for the vehicle and the expected driving conditions.

Cooper Tires Ratings

Basics of Tread Wear Numbers When Looking at Cooper Tires Ratings

Cooper Tires ratings will provide details relating to the tread wear. The wear number helps evaluate the amount of time the tires will last. In most cases, the number is compared to the control tire of 100. This means that the rate at which the tire will wear down over time will compare to the rate of normal wear and tear on that control of 1 ...[more]

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Benefits of Tire Retreads or Retreading Tires


tire retreadingWe hear the term retreads and retreading quite a bit in the tire industry. What those terms mean exactly and the benefits of retreading are concepts people rarely grasp.

Retreading is the process by which certain worn tires, called casings, receive a brand new tread. Only specific tires with carefully inspected tire bodies are used in retreading.

Just like manufacturing a new tire, the worn tread is buffed away, and then a new tread is applied to the tire body. There are quite a few different ways to bond a retread to a tire, but as always the result is the same, a new tread is applied through the use of pressure, heat, and time.

Tire retreading has seen steady growth since the early 1990’s. Tire retreading is a booming industry, and is not going anywhere. Currently, there are arou ...[more]

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Checking Your Oil and Tires


Whether you own a new car or an automobile that has somehow stood the test of time, regular car maintenance is important to the longevity and usability of your vehicle. Here are a few tips to keeping your car in good condition.

Oil

Checking your engine’s oil should be a regular practice and it’s something everyone can do quite easily. Just remember to check your dipstick regularly and make sure that the oil level is between the low and high marks.

Too little or too much oil can be harmful to your engine and may potentially lead to expensive trips to a mechanic.

Similarly, most engines generally require an oil change every 3000 miles. Old oil can gunk up engines, slowing your entire car down, and causing some extensive damage and problems. Fresh oil will keep your engine running as good as new.

Tires

Tires can endure a lot of punishment day to day. As a material, rubber wears down quite easily, especiall ...[more]

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Can Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems Save You Money?


Yes! A tire pressure monitoring system can save you money and here's how--

First, tires that are properly inflated last longer. There is less tread wear on a tire that is properly inflated, so your tires need to be replaced less often. Also, proper inflation helps protect the side walls, resulting in reduced chance of blowouts. Blowouts are dangerous enough, but if you are towing another vehicle, trailer, or boat, blowouts are even more frightening.

Overinflated tires don't "feel" the road as well and are more prone to damage from potholes and foreign road objects. Over inflation also leads to uneven tread wear. Rapid tread wear leads to rapid tire failure and, therefore, expensive tire replacement.

Under inflation causes the tire to "bend" more as it rolls. These tires are much more likely to fail while you are driving.

Second, tires that are properly inflated can save you money on gasoline. The U.S. Departm ...[more]

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Tire Rotation Encourages Even Tread Wear


There are many difficult maintenance and repair chores associated with your automobile, but tire rotation isn’t one of them … and it’s a service that clearly adds to your bottom line. If you know how to change a flat tire, then you have all the necessary skills to perform your own tire rotation.

The concept of tire rotation is simple- you swap the front tires of your car or truck with the back tires at regular intervals. By rotating your tires you increase the life of the entire set of tires. If your tires were never rotated it’s likely you would experience irregular wear in one or two tires, but by rotating at regular intervals you allow all four tires to wear out at about the same time so they can be replaced with a matching set.

Naturally, if you brought tire professionals from ten reputable tire discounters into a room and asked their opinion, you’d get ten different ideas on tire rotation. There is the opinion one should n ...[more]

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