Rotating tires is often ignored as a part of vehicle maintenance. Rotating tires can help stabilize the vehicle, and improve handling. Poor handling in cars is often the reason behind road accidents. It is, therefore, necessary to frequently rotate your vehicle’s tires. Just like changing the oil in a vehicle is essential after a few thousand miles, it is good practice to review the state of your car’s tires and rotate them for their long life and durability.
So how often should I rotate my tires?
Different vehicle manufacturers recommend different timeframes for when the tire should be rotated. Generally, tire rotation should be carried out every 6000 to 7,500 miles or in simple terms, every 6 months. However, there is no certain time for time rotation. It all depends on your driving habits. If you are a rough driver your tires will wear out quicker compared to a driver who is gentle with his car. Therefore, to get a sure estimate based on your driving habits, visit your nearest mechanic for a regular checkup or consult your car’s user manual. Your best bet would be to rotate your tires every time you visit your mechanic for an oil change.
What is tire rotation?
Tire rotation is the act of replacing all four of your car’s tires with one another thereby changing their respective position. It is usually the case that both the front tires are swapped with the rear tires. However, you can also attempt to replace the tires on the right side of the car with the tires on the left.
Why you should rotate tires?
Rotating tires can increase the life of the tires. All vehicle manufacturers recommend this practice to ensure the tire’s durability. Not only that, rotation can prevent tires from wearing out unevenly, it can alleviate suspension problems and improve your vehicle’s handling.
Handling, as we mentioned above is integral for you and your car if you intend to stay safe on the road. The two front wheels are tasked at taking your car in different directions and as such, they twist and turn regularly causing them to wear out quicker than the two rear tires. If you fail to swap your front tires with your rear tires you can lose traction on the road and you can get involved in an accident. Therefore, it is best to swap your tires before they lose their tread marks.
How to rotate tires?
Rotating tires is not rocket science and as such you don’t need a mechanic, or a rocket scientist for that matter, to change them for you. You simply need to know how to remove a tire from your vehicle, which we must assume is common knowledge. However, if you still don’t know how to change a tire by yourself, you can visit your nearest mechanic and pay attention. Watch how he does it and the next time repeat the process. Save yourself some money!
Since rear-wheeled (RWD) vehicles send power to their rear tires for motion, it is natural for them to wear out simply due to the force of acceleration. As such, all four tires wear out almost equally. This is due to fact that front wheels steer while the rear wheels provide thrust to the vehicle. In order to prevent tire wear in a rear wheel drive, all you have to do is to swap the front wheels and the rear wheels while keeping the phase of the tires same. This way, the tires will not wear out unevenly.
Compared to rear wheel drive vehicles, front wheel drive vehicle tires deteriorate quicker. That is due to their extra workload. Not only do the front wheels in an FWD have to steer but they also have to absorb the impact of acceleration. To prevent this, you would have to swap the front tires with the rear and the rear with the front ones. Along with this, you would have to change the location of tires from left to right and vice versa.
Amongst all the different kinds of vehicles, the AWD vehicle gets the most even wear on all its tires. However, having unnecessary and uneven tread on one tire can disturb the stability of the vehicle. Therefore, as also recommended by the vehicle manufacturers, all-wheel drive vehicles should have their tires rotated frequently as they are equally prone to tread damage. The front wheels should be swapped with the rear ones and the wheels in phase should be switched from left to right or vice versa.
Having your vehicle’s tires rotated might cost you some money and if you are rotating them yourself, sometime but the act ensures the longevity, durability, and stability of the tires. Rotating tires can also help to prevent skidding on a wet road, which can happen due to tread wear on tires. Therefore, rotating tires should be considered in the maintenance of vehicles and as a part of safety for driving. Also, it will help save you money on buying new tires in case the previous ones get damaged.