What You Need to Know About Car Tires

car tiresLooking to replace the tires on your car, but feeling like you don’t know where to start?  There are a few basic tips and knowledge bites that can help you in knowing when you need to replace your car tires, and what ratings can help you in deciding what type of tire is best for your vehicle’s needs.

First, it is important to understand tire tread.  No one should be driving on “bald” tires, as this is extremely dangerous both to you and to the drivers around you.  A bald tire is a tire with a tread of 2/32″.  This is legally bald, and you should replace your tires long before it gets to this point. One trick-of-the-trade for car owners is to use a penny to determine tread depth.  If you insert a penny into the groove of the tread (with Lincoln’s head down) and you cannot see Lincoln’s hair, your tread is likely fine.  If you can see it, however, the tread is too low and you need to look at replacing your tires.  Be sure the tread is evenly worn across the tire.

Now, it’s time to replace your tires. What do you look for?  Your car’s manufacturer will tell you what size tire you need, or we can help you when you call or come in.  Tire size includes things like tire width, diameter, load-bearing capacity and index, speed index, and aspect ratio (height to width relationship).  All these numbers or codes are located on the side of your tire, and so if you look at your current tires, you will be able to see what you are currently using.  The load index and speed index are two things that relate to the size and load-bearing capacity of your car and how that will affect speed and vice versa.

Another important thing to look at when choosing your car tires is the UTQC rating.  This rating is comprised of 3 important aspects of the tire’s durability and function: treadwear, traction, and temperature.  While you don’t need to understand all of these in detail, knowing that rate of how long the tire lasts with normal wear-and-tear, as well as how well the tire breaks in wet conditions, are both useful in determining which type of car tires are right for your vehicle.

Finally, our technicians and experts are able to help you determine a proper fit and rating for your particular vehicle and your personal lifestyle.  Give us a call at Joyce Automotive, and we’ll gladly be of assistance in helping you choose your new or used car tires.

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