Reading Tire Wear Patterns

Reading Tire Wear Patterns

Advice from Gillman Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram of Houston, TX

In an ideal world, your car's tires would wear evenly across the face of the tread throughout the life of the tires. This rarely happens, though, because tires wear as a function of how they are balanced and the condition of your vehicle's suspension. In fact, mechanics often look at tire wear and use it to diagnose tire and suspension problems. This is what they look for:

What does it mean when my tires are worn in the center?

If your tires are wearing down rapidly in the center of the tread, you may be driving on tires that are over-inflated. When your tires are filled over the recommended pressure, they balloon up and ride along the center of the tread and this makes them wear down much faster than the rest of the tire. The solution: Review your owner's manual for the vehicle's recommended tire pressure.

What does it mean when my tires are worn on one edge?

If you examine your tires and discover that the inner or outer edges of any tire is wearing down faster than the rest of the tread, your vehicle's wheel alignment is likely off. This wear pattern indicates that your wheels are leaning too much to one side, which can typically be blamed on misalignment. The solution: a front and rear tire alignment.

What does it mean when my tires are worn on both edges?

In contrast to center wear, both edges may wear when tires are under-inflated. If you're driving on tires that are under-inflated, the edge of the tires will make the most contact with the road, causing the edges to wear down more quickly. Again, it's important to check your owner's manual and inflate your tires to the correct tire pressure for your car.

What does it mean when my tires are cupped?

If you notice that there are random smooth spots on your tire or little depressions in the tread wear, the culprit is likely your ball joints or tie rod ends that need replacement. If this is the case, it's important to get your suspension checked and replace any worn or misshapen parts.

When is it time for Tire Rotation?

Note that if your tires haven't worn too badly, there is no need for new ones. Once a mechanic has fixed the underlying problem, they should perform a complete tire rotation. This will allow the tires to rotate evenly.

The Tire Experts at Gillman Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram of Houston, TX

If you notice unusual wear patterns on your tires, the best thing to start with is an alignment check at Gillman Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram. Compromised tires may cause car accidents-don't put yourself or others at risk. Whether you need a quick tire pressure adjustment or a wheel alignment, you can be sure our technicians will take care of you. And, before you go, be sure check their specials page for discounts on tires and another service items.

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