16 February 2018

Basic Tire Maintenance For Every Driver

Unless you’re a car person, you probably don’t know much about your tires other than your car requires four of them to get you around. But don’t worry, anyone can learn basic tire maintenance!

And you should want to because this kind of knowledge can help save you money in the long run and help prolong the life of your tires! Not to mention the fact that it can help save you in the event of an accident or flat tire.

Why is basic tire maintenance important?

For starters checking things like air pressure, rotation, alignment and inspections can save you tons of money from having to constantly buy new tires all the time. After all, new rubber isn’t exactly cheap. Making sure that your tires are properly inflated can make all the difference in how long your tires will last you since over-inflated ones wont’ wear evenly and those that are under-inflated won’t last as long either. Normally, you want your tires to last 60,000 miles and knowing the correct tire pressure could really get you closer to that number. Also, the right tire pressure can help save on gas!

What to check?

Make sure you check your tire’s pressure at least once a month (and don’t forget the spare). To check the pressure, insert a pressure gauge into the valve stem on your tire and this gauge will pop out and show the psi number that you then compare to the recommended psi for your tire. If it’s above, let air out to match; if it’s below continue to add air. You can find the psi in your owner’s manual for the car or on a sticker on the driver’s door or on the gas tank.

What to know?

Every driver should also know how to change a tire in case they get a flat. Sure, you can call someone to come help, but this should be basic knowledge all drivers should know. Find your spare tire and tools (jack and lug wrench) in the trunk if it comes with one, if not buy a kit! Read your manual to find the right place you’ll need to lift the car with the jack. You want to lift it enough to where the wheel is off the ground, then take off the lug nuts before taking off the tire with both hands. Get your spare and align the holes with the bolts on the wheel, pushing the tire in as far as it can go. Replace the lugs and tighten. Lower the car and then retighten each lug nut.

Also, before you leave on a long road trip, make sure you check your tires’ tread wear and condition and have them changed if they seem worn down or are damaged!