With the beautiful summer weather, you’ll want to cruise with the windows down and your favorite song playing on the radio. But along with having summer fun, make sure you’re checking up on your tires every now and again. You might not think about your tires as much during the summer, but if they're getting old, maybe it’s time to replace them.
It’s difficult to determine how long your tires should last. Depending on what type of climate or area you live in, and even your driving habits, these things can all affect a tire's lifespan.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the warmer the climate is, the more wear and tear on your tires. Tires will age more quickly when exposed to sunlight and heat. Depending on where you live, you may need to consider replacing your tires if they’ve been outside and exposed to extreme heat for long periods of time.
What about your spare tire? Yes, your spare tire will age too—just at a slower rate. Regardless of whether your spare tire is inside your trunk, in your garage, or mounted on a wheel on the outside of your vehicle, it will also be affected by the heat. Be aware of the aging process before putting the spare tire on your car.
One of the most important things you can do as a car owner is to put yourself in a routine: check your tires monthly, and know what to look out for before any damage can be done.
Some things you can check for yourself:
- Look for basic wear and tear: check for nails or screws and any separation from the sidewall. Small things like these can increase your chances of getting a flat tire or a blowout.
- Look for bubbles and blisters: if you see any type of bulge in the tire it means a part of the tire is weak
- Measure tread depth: there is a unique way to measure a tire's tread depth-- place a penny (head side down) into the tread. If you can see Abe’s forehead, it is time to replace your tires.
- Consistently keep track of tire pressure: it’s a good habit to check and make sure your tires are inflated to the correct level. If the tire pressure isn’t where it needs to be, your vehicle's traction and fuel efficiency will be affected.
- Recognize when something is wrong: when driving around, pay attention to how your car is handling. If the ride is bumpy or you feel a vibration, get your tires checked out.
Tires are one of the most important parts of a car. Because of this, it's crucial to inspect your tires frequently to protect your safety and avoid damage to your vehicle.
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