Certain things are unavoidable when you own a car, and having to replace the tyres now and then is one of them.
Nobody wants to bear the cost of this expensive job and there’s no way to avoid it but we can do things to prolong having to pay.
So, how do you reduce tyre wear? The four key things to reduce the severity of your car’s tyre wear are to look at your driving habits, keep proper tyre pressure, have your wheels aligned, and check the rotation of your tyres.
A little bit of effort in these areas will mean you have to replace the tyres less frequently and save yourself some money.
Equipping your ride with a set of new tyres isn’t cheap, and if you can make some small changes to get more use out of them, then it’s worth the effort.
We’ll show you how to reduce tyre wear and put this task off as long as possible by making some changes the rest of your car can benefit from as well.
The Best Ways to Reduce Tyre Wear
Nobody wants to bear the brunt of a costly new set of tyres, and while it’s unavoidable eventually, it probably doesn’t have to be done as often as it is.
Thankfully, there are a few things you can implement to keep your tyres in good shape by reducing the wear and tear on them, so think about turning these tips into habits you stick to.
Adjusting Poor Driving Habits
As much as we don’t want to admit it, we’re often the cause of premature tyre wear due to poor driving habits.
There are some things that people do regularly without thinking that can lead our tyres to wear down sooner, so try to avoid these in the future:
- Going at high speeds and then taking a corner will cause the edges of your tyre to wear down faster because of friction and heat. While you should always avoid speeding, it’s even more important if you’re driving on a winding road or taking a sharp corner.
- Be mindful of the conditions you’re driving in and don’t push your car to perform where it can’t. Keep a keen eye out for potholes as driving over them just once can puncture the tyre, wear it down, and mess up the wheel’s alignment, which is another factor that can cause them to deteriorate.
Maintaining Proper Tyre Pressure
Tyre pressure correlates to how much air is in your tyre, and you should be filling it back up to the recommended level at least once a month.
This is a free service you can do yourself when you stop to get petrol, and there are tools available online that can show you the right amount to fill it to if you’re unsure.
A properly inflated tyre will be able to distribute the weight of the car evenly so it’s important to prevent wearing down.
A tyre that’s too inflated means specific areas will have more contact with the road, and an underinflated one means more areas will be in contact with the road than they should.
A tyre rotation is when the tyres of a car are swapped so that they can get a more even wear on them, and this process helps to prolong their life.
Whenever you take your car for a service or oil change, they can rotate them for you, and it’s a relatively simple process that can end up saving you a lot of money.
When the tyres are swapped, they each get a turn of being in the more taxing position, so they all wear down evenly.
The front tyres are the ones that bear the brunt of the friction because they help you steer the car, so it’s likely they’ll wear down long before the back ones do unless rotated.
Tyre balancing is not to be confused with tyre rotation as it’s more about adjusting the weight distribution of the vehicle.
When tread wear causes the car’s weight to be distributed unevenly, it can do even more damage to the tyres and might be felt by a vibrating feeling when you drive the car.
Having the tyres balanced and the weight distributed evenly once again will keep them even.
It’s common for the wheels of our car to become askew and this happens with everyday driving or due to accidents like driving over a pothole.
When the wheels are misaligned, the tyres are going to suffer and start to wear down in certain areas more than others because they’re in more contact with the road than they should be.
To get your wheels aligned, it’s as simple as having the job done when your tyres are rotated and should be completed together for optimum tyre health.
A mechanic can look at how the wheels align with the steering wheel and get them back into the line which means less stress on the car’s tyres.
The Tyre Wear Patterns You Need to Know
Tyre wear is often a symptom you can use to diagnose a problem, whether it’s something to do with your driving habits or another issue with the car.
If you’re able to closely examine the pattern of wear on your tyres it could be a clue to what’s wrong, so keep an eye out for these common ones:
- Feathering: A feathering pattern on your tyres may be caused by wheel misalignment and there will be specific spots that have worn down more than others.
- Centre tread wear: Just as driving with low pressure can cause issues, driving with overinflated tyres can lead to the centre of your tyre being worn down.
- Shoulder wear: A tyre can be worn on either side due to two possible causes. First, driving with low tyre pressure, and secondly, hard cornering while travelling at high speeds. If you notice wear on the shoulders of your tyres it’s likely you need to change these habits.
Setting a Schedule to Replace Tyres
Tyres go through a lot in their lifetime with heat, friction, rain, and more and it’s one part of your car that needs to be changed regularly.
As a rule, the experts recommend changing your car’s tyres every 32,000kms to 45,000kms, but it’s not always the best way to tell when they’re due for replacement.
Every five years, have your tyres checked by a professional and make regular inspections yourself to verify their condition.
Any tyre over 10 years of age should be replaced otherwise they post a great safety hazard. Before going on a long journey or when having your car fixed for another reason, get the tyres checked out just to make sure they’re okay.
If you want to find out how old your car’s tyres are, it’s easy enough to find this printed on the sidewall of the type.
The manufacturing date will be written in a four-digit number which represents the month and year they were made, so you can figure out when they’re due for replacement.
Everyday Ways to Reduce Tyre Wear
Tyre wear is an inevitable part of car ownership and it’s natural for them to wear down over time considering everything they go through.
However, with a few new habits formed and a more dedicated approach to car care, you can make sure your tyres go the distance and don’t need to be replaced as frequently.
A car’s tyres are an important part that keeps the car moving but also ensures your safety.
If you still have questions about the role that a tyre places in the overall vehicle and what to learn more about them, read on to see our expert answers to some common queries that others have had.
How Far Can You Drive With a Flat Tyre?
It’s not advisable to drive any distance once you’ve determined that your tyres are flat, even if modern tyres are designed to make it easier and less damaging.
Driving with a flat tyre will damage the rims on your car which can be expensive to repair, so if you notice that a tyre is flat, pull over and replace it or call for help.
Can You Change a Tyre Yourself?
Changing a tyre can be done by yourself without having to visit the mechanic, provided you have the right know-how and tools.
The process should be practised at home first so you feel confident doing it on the side of a road when needed, and you’ll always need to keep a car jack, cross wrench, and torque wrench in your car just in case.