Driving Habits and Tire Wear
Your driving habits can affect tire wear, safety and fuel economy. Tire wear is normal under normal driving conditions, high under extreme driving conditions, and minimal if you drive more conservatively.
Start driving more conservatively and you'll save money on tire replacement. It's part of my approach to frugal living. How about you?
The biggest factors in tire wear when it comes to driving habits is how and where you drive.
Let's look at how you drive and its influence on tire wear.
- Quick take offs from a standstill wear out your tires by leaving a bit of them on the pavement.
- Fast stops leave more tire on the pavement too.
Go easy on the gas and brake, and you'll have more tread on your tire and less on the pavement. You'll also lengthen the time in between tire replacement.
Here is another tire care tip. Tread can separate and tires can throw a weight that causes them to be off balance. That will cause a noticeable vibration. You'll notice this if how you drive includes paying attention to what your car is trying to tell you.
- Vibrations you feel in the steering wheel are coming from the front end of the car (could be tires, bearings or steering linkage).
- Vibrations you feel in your butt are coming from the rear of the car (could be tires or bearings).
Try having a closer relationship with your car. Get used to how it sounds and feels under certain conditions. This can help you detect tire wear and other problems before they become larger and more expensive.
Now let's look at where you drive and its influence on tire wear.
Travel on rock and gravel roads is rough on rubber. It tends to take little chunks out of the tire as the sharp pieces of the road act somewhat like sandpaper on your tires.
In you drive on large pieces of crushed rock or near the edge of a sloped embankment, don't be surprised if you get a cut in your sidewall that deflates your tire in about two seconds. A gash in your sidewall is not repairable. You'll need to buy another tire.
Driving in construction areas or in the junk yard will raise the chances that you will get a puncture or cut in your tire. Nails are a common source of tire failure, especially around construction sites.
Most nail holes can be fixed with a plug type patch, but larger holes cannot. Holes on the edge of the tire (between the tread and sidewall) are difficult to fix. Holes in the sidewall require tire replacement.
Take care how you drive and where you drive, and you'll save on tire wear, tire repair and tire replacement.
Make conservative driving habits part of your approach to frugal living and you'll get more mileage out of your tires. That translates into more miles per dollar where the rubber meets the road.
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