When it comes to your vehicle, no matter the make or model, tires are some of the most important elements. Key for both safety and performance, tires are part of the foundation of any car, truck, SUV or other vehicle.
At Jerry Lambert Automotive, we have tire service available for every vehicle on the road. Beyond offering options like mounting, balancing and rotation, we can also show you a few handy tips for keeping an eye on your tires as you drive between service appointments. Here are a few important areas to consider:
One of the most important parts of the tire is the tread, which is what actually grips the road and allows you a high level of control while you drive. It’s also very important for braking, one of the largest safety areas when driving a vehicle. Unfortunately, though, tread depth does wear down over time as tires spin hundreds of thousands of times while supporting a heavy piece of equipment.
You can keep an eye on your tread and track when it might be time for replacement tires easily, however. All you need is a standard US penny, which you should place between the tread blocks or lines on your tire. Look at the side featuring Abraham Lincoln’s head, with the coin turned so his head is upside-down – can you see the top of his head? If so, and especially if you can see a gap between his head and the upper edge of the penny, your tread is wearing down and you need new tires. If you can’t see any of Lincoln’s head, however, you should be in good shape.
It’s also important to regularly check your tire pressure, which can speak to both safety and the wear placed on other vehicle elements. The best pressure range for your tires should be listed on the inside of your driver’s door, but you can find it online if not.
We recommend, if possible, keeping a handheld tire pressure gauge in your car or trunk. These are cheap and easy to store, and can track the PSI – pounds per square inch of pressure – in your tires. If you don’t have one of these, many gas stations have machines that will both check your tire pressure and help you increase it if needed.
Check for Cracks
Another thing to look for on your tires is any cracks, which signal that the tire is wearing down. Now, it’s important to differentiate between cracks here – smaller ones on the tread block or on the sidewall are normal, and not cause for concern. However, if you can see the actual cords here, or if you note air leaving the tire or the tread separating from its rubber, this is a telltale sign that replacement is in order.
For more on caring for your tires, or to learn about any of our preventive automotive maintenance services, speak to the pros at Jerry Lambert Automotive today.