What are you doing to ensure your tires and wheels are in good condition? There are some basic things everyone can learn how to do, and when to do, that make a difference in your car’s performance.

Engines and everything related to your car in that area may be complicated, but the tires and wheels are a little less so. Certain habits of keeping an eye on your tires and wheels are good ones to start. Having these habits can save you money and stress in the long run and keep your car in great working condition.

Tire Pressure

Every car’s optimal tire pressure is different. Do you know what that is for your vehicle? There is a guide to inflation on the tires, but that’s not the best number to follow. Your vehicle’s manual, as well as a sticker located right inside the driver’s side door, will tell you what to aim for on tire pressure.

Its good practice to check your tire pressure once a month. While some cars have sensors that alert you to low tire pressure, it isn’t always the most accurate or reliable. It’s a great failsafe, but not as good as you checking the pressure with a tire gauge. The pressure changes with the weather, so be sure to double-check pressures when there is a dramatic change in temperature. You don’t always need to use a gauge either, just walk around the vehicle and give your tires a visual check.

Condition of Your Tires: Treads and Sidewalls

Looking at the treads on your tires can usually tell you when its time to get the tires replaced. If you aren’t sure, a simple guide to checking the tire’s tread is to insert a quarter into the groove and looking to see if Washington’s head is visible. If you can see his head, it’s time to have your tires replaced.

When you look at the sidewall check for bulges, thinned out areas, any damage, and anything else that doesn’t look quite right. These signs are a blowout waiting to happen. It’s always safer to get a second opinion before you end up in an accident on the highway from a tire blowout.

Spare Tire

Are you familiar with the location of your spare tire? Do you know where the tools to change a flat are? Do you know how to use them? If you’ve never changed a tire, or don’t know how, watch a few YouTube videos and learn. It would be a terrible thing to get stuck on a road side with a flat tire, not know how to fix it, and have no one in sight to help you out. Give it a try on your vehicle. Every vehicle is different, and it never hurts to practice so you will be able to do it if need be.

Tire & Wheel Maintenance

Like you change your oil, it’s also a good idea to routinely take your vehicle in for a rotation, balance, and alignment when needed. Rotate your tires regularly, and you will have more even wear on your tread. This means replacing your tires less often. If you’ve driven on tires that have uneven wear or that are not balanced properly, then you will definitely want to have an alignment inspection.

Depending on your comfort level, you may be able to do most or all of the maintenance for your tires and wheels at home. For those who want the help of trustworthy professional mechanics, call Auto Alternative Service & Sales. We always do our best for you and your vehicle to keep it running smoothly and running well. Set up an appointment today.