Tires are a critical part of your vehicle. They aid in maneuvering on the road and play a large role in keeping your vehicle safe by gripping the road. Having worn-out tires or the wrong size makes driving risky. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that almost 11,000 accidents occur every year due to tire problems. Most of these could have been avoided. Keep these five tire safety considerations in mind to ensure your tires are safe for your next trip.
1. Balance, Align, and Rotate
Have your tires balanced, aligned and rotated on a regular basis. You might not think that it benefits you, but this regular maintenance extends the life of your driveline components. A common sign that it’s time to get your tires aligned is if you notice your vehicle pulling to one side or another while driving.
2. Check the Pressure
Check your tire pressure often, especially during the winter months when the temperatures drop. Potholes affect tire pressure more than you would think. The sudden impact of a pothole jars the tire and temporarily breaks the seal, which slightly reduces the tire pressure. Hitting potholes frequently results in a large pressure loss over time.
3. Choose the Correct Tire Size and Season
All tires are not created equal. Tires meant for the summer aren’t suited for cold, wet roads during the winter. Winter tires shouldn’t be used during the summer because they’re designed for cold temperatures and the tread wears faster in warm weather than it should. Use the size of tire recommended by your vehicle’s owner’s manual to prevent issues from popping up with wear, balance and how they feel when driving.
4. Examine the Tread
Check the tread on your tires often. Low tire tread is dangerous and affects how your car grips the road. Examine the tread and look for other signs of damage such as cupping, uneven wear or fraying. Wear on your tires can be a sign of more significant problems with steering, suspension or the driveline. Tires wear out over time, even if you don’t drive too often.
5. Register your Tires
Register the tires and keep documentation of the purchase. Tires get recalled through the year and registering with the NHTSA ensures you receive email alerts that apply to you. The last thing you want is a car accident lawsuit on your hands that could have been avoided.
One of the best ways to maintain your vehicle is to keep your tires well-maintained. Don’t overlook the importance of checking and maintaining your tires regularly to keep your vehicle safe all year round.