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Tire Rotation Basics

Tire Rotation
Tire rotation is a critical part of maintaining your vehicle. Some manufactures even require regular tire rotations as a condition of their warranty. Tire rotations are important to the life of your tires, optimal performance of your vehicle and driving safety. Keep reading for a more detailed outline on why getting a tire rotation is so important.

Why is getting a tire rotation important?

Frequent tire rotations are important because they extend the life of your tires. They also save you money in the long run.

Most cars have engines in the front and carry more weight in the front of the vehicle. Front tires also do the majority of the work, especially on a front wheel drive vehicle. For example, when you turn, more weight shifts to the outside edge of your front tires and the rear tires just follow. Because of the extra weight and strain, your front tires will wear out more quickly than your back tires. Many tire warranties require that you have regular, documented tire rotations done on your car or truck.

Are all vehicle tire rotations the same?

On most vehicles, tires are rotated diagonally or right to left, front to back. However, there are some circumstances where this might not be the case. An example of tires that cannot be rotated in this way include directional tires. These can only be rotated from front to back but must stay on the same side of the vehicle. Another reason may be that some cars have two different size tires on the front and rear. These tires can only be rotated from side to side. Also, some vehicles recommend different air pressure in your front tires than your back tires. Have your technician check this and adjust as needed. You should be able to find the manufacturer’s guidelines in your owner’s manual.

Should I include my full-size spare tire in the tire rotation?

It is a good idea to incorporate your spare tire in rotations. If the day comes where you find yourself in need of changing a flat, you want to make sure the tread wear and air pressure is consistent with your current tires. This is especially important if you have a four-wheel drive or all-wheel drive vehicle. You want to include the spare to avoid creating other mechanical problems that are very expensive to fix. Just make sure that the spare tire is the same size as the tires on the wheels and not intended for temporary use.

How often should I have my tires rotated?

We recommend having a tire rotation every 6,000–8,000 miles, or with every other oil change. If you’re due to have your tires rotated have them done at one of our local Blain’s Farm & Fleet service centers.  And of course, always work with your auto mechanic when getting any work done on your vehicle. Learn more about proper tire maintenance on our blog.

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