Check your air pressure early and often!
Maintaining proper inflation pressure is crucial for getting the most out of your tires, both in long mileage and a comfortable ride. Air pressure is measured in psi (pounds per square inch) and should be adjusted when the tires are "cold", which means check it early in the morning or after the vehicle has been sitting for at least 3 hours. If you need to adjust for a "warm" tire, simply add 2-4 psi to the vehicle manufacturer's recommended cold inflation pressure, and check the cold inflation pressure at your earliest convenience. Even a perfectly healthy tire loses 1-2 psi per month, so it's important to check your pressures often. Get your tire repaired at the first sign of a leak or nailhole puncture. Remember, running your tires underinflated also means that you are overloading them, which can do permanent damange. Stop by any Sullivan Tire for a complimentary air pressure check and adjustment. Come as often as you like, no appointment necessary!
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A bad jolt from hitting a curb or pothole can throw your front end out of alignment and damage your tires if not corrected promptly. Have your alignment checked at least 1-2 times per year, or at the first sign of the vehicle not tracking straight when driving on a straight stretch of road (a.k.a. "pulling"). When you purchase our Tire Maintenance and Protection Plan (TMPP), you get a complimentary alignment check every 6 months for the life of the tires!
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Regularly rotating your tires will help you achieve more uniform wear. Unless your vehicle's owners manual has a specific recommendation, the guideline for tire rotation is approximately every 5,000-7,000 miles, or roughly every other oil change. Frequent tire rotations and tire inspections can help to identify an alignment or steering problem before too much damage occurs to the tire. This service is complimentary for the life of the tires when you purchase our Tire Maintenance and Protection Plan (TMPP).
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Check Your Tread
A tread depth guage is an inexpensive and effective tool for measuring the amount of tread left on your tires. Hydroplaining can occur even at low speeds if the tread is not deep enough to channel the water from under your tires. The tread depth measurement is taken in 32nds of an inch, and should be taken from the tread grooves at three different areas of the tread (inner, center, and outside). If any part of the tread is at or below 2/32" depth, the Department of Transportation (DOT) considers the tire as having reached the end of it's useful life and should be replaced.
- Most car tires come with around 10/32" tread depth when new.
- Most Light Truck/SUV tires come with around 14/32" tread depth when new.
Measuring your tires:
At or below 2/32" tread depth, tires should be replaced as soon as possible.
At or below 4/32", it is not uncommon to feel a significant differences in traction and grip. You should begin to think about tire replacement.
When measuring your tread depth, it is not uncommon to have a tire that is worn out in one area of the tread, but may still have plenty of tread in other areas. It is important to remove a tire from service when any part of the tread is at or below 2/32" measurement. Chances are, the part of the tire that is worn out is the part you need most when cornering or driving in adverse weather conditions.
Stop by any Sullivan Tire and we'll be glad to take these measurements for you!
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