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How to Tell When You Need New Tires

Follow our four tire inspection tips to tell if your vehicle needs new tires.

Having a good set of tires can make all the difference between a safe, smooth ride and a potential car crash. Not only are worn out tires bad for your car, but they’re also dangerous. In 2013, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimated that around 11,000 car crashes a year are caused by tire failure. Some of the common causes include worn out tire treads, blowouts and under-inflated tires. It’s important to regularly check your tires for signs of tire failure to see if you need new tires, so you (and other drivers) can be safe on the road.

1. Vibration

How to Tell When You Need New Tires
You need to regularly inspect your vehicle’s tires. Use our inspection tips to determine if you need new tires.

If you’re driving on poorly-paved roads, a little vibration is expected. However, if your vehicle is constantly shaking or vibrating, you have a bigger problem at hand. If your vehicle is vibrating, it can mean there’s an issue with your tire alignment or balance. It can also mean there’s an internal problem with the tire itself. If your car is shaking, it’s best to take it into a tire shop to have it looked at.

2.  Tire Pressure

Over-inflated and under-inflated tires can both cause serious problems, such as blowouts. Regularly checking your tire pressure is important. Tires can lose air if you drive over a pothole or if you hit a curb in a parking lot. Tires also naturally lose air over time. You should know how to check your tire pressure and continue to maintain it.

3. Tread Wear

Tread wear can make your vehicle unsafe, leading to hydroplaning, bad traction and more problems. It’s important to check your tire tread depth every few months. This way, you can buy new tires before you lose traction. You can check your tire tread depth a few ways. The penny test is a simple way to do it. Insert a penny into the tire’s tread groove, with Lincoln’s head down. If you can see all of Lincoln’s head, it’s time to get new tires. You can use the tread wear indicator bar that’s molded into the tires. If the tread wear bar is flush with the ribs of the tire, you need new tires. You can also use a tire tread depth gauge.

4. Sidewall Cracks, Gouges or Bubbles

If there are cracks or gouges in the sidewall, you’ll need new tires. Natural aging, rain and ice can all cause cracks in your sidewall. Poor alignment can also cause damage to the sidewall of your tires. A cracked sidewall can cause a blowout. If you have any cracks in the sidewall, it’s time to buy new tires. Bubbles or bulges means there’s a possible leak in the tire. This, too, can lead to a blow out. It’s best to buy new tires at this point to avoid any accidents.

When you need to buy tires, Blain’s Farm & Fleet is there for you. Not only do we offer great tire service, ranging from passenger tire mounting to tire repair, we also can help you find new tires in our tire shop. If you want to shop around before coming to one of our automotive service centers, you can find tires online with our tire lookup feature. If you’re ready to install new tires, you can request a quote online or call to schedule an appointment at 1-800-365-9936.

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