Stop Burning Rubber: 5 Ways Smart Drivers Make Their Tires Last

If you drive any car long enough, you are eventually going to need to replace the tires. This can be an expensive proposition, with prices ranging from $50 on the very low end up to $1,000 or more per tire. If you want to make your tires last, follow these tips.

Stop Burning Rubber: 5 Ways Smart Drivers Make Their Tires Last

Use the Right Tires

Not all tires are created equal, and not all tires are the best fit for every purpose. Some are engineered for high performance on specific terrain or certain conditions. If you want your wheels to last as long as possible, you need to look for Nissan tires or other tires designed for that purpose. 

When choosing tires, you’ll want a high Uniform Tire Quality Guide treadwear rating. The UTQG treadwear number is stamped on the sidewall. Most standard all-season tires have a UTQG rating in the 700-800 range. A higher number is better here, and the numbers are relative. A 400 should last twice as long as a 200, for example.

Maintain the Right Pressure

Improperly inflated tires are the most common cause of uneven tread wear, leading to tire failures. Automobile tires lose an average of one to two pounds of air pressure per month. Pressure will also drop in cold weather. Check your tire pressure regularly. You can find the correct tire pressure on a placard in the driver-side door jamb.

Slow Down

When you drive aggressively, your tires wear out more quickly. Increased friction from sudden stops, rapid acceleration, and hard cornering will wear away at the tread. If you want your tires to last longer, try for smoother stops, steady acceleration, and controlled cornering.

Get Routine Alignments

An alignment adjusts your car’s suspension to put the wheels into the correct position. Misaligned tires can affect handling and cause uneven wear on your tires, which may leave you needing to replace some or all of them.

You might need an alignment if your steering wheel shakes or is off center while you drive, or if the car pulls to one side. Even if you’re not experiencing those problems, you should get an alignment at least once a year. If you drive on rough terrain or hit a lot of potholes, you’ll probably need one more often.

Rotate Your Tires

Rotating your tires means moving them to different corners of the vehicle. Exactly how they should be rotated depends on whether your car is front-wheel drive, rear-wheel drive, or all-wheel drive.

Rotating tires should happen about every 5,000 miles. Failing to do this can cut your tires’ usable life in half. It’s a simple thing that can keep your tires going for much longer. Most tire manufacturer warranties also require proper tire rotation to keep the warranty valid.

Some basic maintenance steps and careful driving can save you time and money. The things that make your tires last longer also make driving your car safer. Follow these steps and your tires can last much longer.