Why Having Tires With Fresh Tread is Important
Most car owners understand the importance of keeping an eye on their tires. Making sure your tires are at optimal health helps you keep your gas mileage up and more importantly prevents you from getting a dreaded flat tire somewhere you least expect it. But there’s more to just money and inconvenience when it comes to the tires on your car. Your vehicle’s tires are the point of contact between you and the road. Sometimes that means they are what steady you against weather and environmental elements you encounter when driving.
Summed up — your tires are easily the first point of contact between your car and your safety. Having new tread on your tires means that your vehicle is being looked at regularly, which will fend off any long-term engine or bodywork. Additionally, it shows that you have an awareness of your car and everything that makes your car work well. While many components go into a safe tire, the tread is the most significant determining factor to the overall life of your tires. Sometimes, this extends to the whole life of your car, as well.
How Tires Work — A Brief Overview
It is essential to understand the total makeup of a car’s wheels to know why tread on the wheels is so crucial. The tire’s primary function is to serve as a moving platform for the car’s load. Each car’s weight and handling specification is made possible by the help of a well-functioning tire and all its elements. For a healthy tire, its full functionality depends upon the following:
- Tread Depth. In layman’s terms, this is how deep the grooves are in your tire. It’s true that this directly impacts your car’s ability to handle well in rough weather, but it also can make an impact on the way it handles with a large load in it. The tread is what helps the car grip to the road. A great way to think about it is like shoe tread, You might be able to get around in flip-flops, but if you’re hiking down a wet rock face, you’re not going to be able to keep your grip in flip flops, no matter how experienced or strong you are. You need hiking boots for that. Tread depth, therefore, is essential when it comes to mileage, safety, and handling of a car.
- Tire Pressure. The tire pressure is what evens out the weight balance on your tire and scales out the rolling resistance. Not only does an improperly inflated tire put undue pressure on other components of your car, but you’re also likely to notice it in the tread if you consistently over inflate or under inflate your tires.
- Overinflated tires can be dangerous, causing you to have less surface area for your tires to work with, meaning less for your tire to grip onto. If you are consistently overinflating your tires, you will notice that the center of your tires’ tread will be worn more quickly.
- An underinflated tire will cause you to waste more gas, as it puts extra resistance on the car. Additionally, consistently underinflated tires will cause the tread on the outside of the tires to wear down more quickly.
- Tire Balance. The balance of your tires refers to the action being taken to evenly distribute the weight on your tires so that they work correctly. Although tires are meant to spread and distribute the weight of your car, most anyone can see that vehicles do not receive the same amount of weight dispersed throughout them. Therefore, balancing and rotating the tire redistributes the weight over time and leads to a longer life for your tires.
How Tread Impacts Safety
We briefly touched upon this earlier, but the tread is what keeps you “stuck” to the road. While it doesn’t quite work like velcro, cars are better able to handle water on the street, rubble, or ice if they have better tread. On water-slick surfaces, the tread is what allows water to be expelled from beneath a moving tire. Anyone who has experience hydroplaning understands that scary feeling of not gaining purchase of the road because water is in between the tire and the road. Hydroplaning occurs a lot more if you have poor tread, and can lead to accidents.
Don’t Forget About Your Spare
Even though you use it less often, each time you get your tires serviced, you should also be checking your spare. You can do this on your own with a simple tire pressure gauge and your eyes. Make sure that your spare has the correct pressure, and if it doesn’t, fill it up. Inspect your spare for any issues, like wear and tear, and get those remedied asap if you need. The last thing you need when your tire goes out is to find that your spare is also in disrepair.
Why You Should Care About Performance
If you are reading this and thinking that tread and tire pressure are mostly related to performance, you’d be right. But there’s no reason that the everyday person shouldn’t care about their car’s performance. Performance doesn’t necessarily refer to its ability to function like a racecar. But performance is directly related to the tires, and if your tires have an issue it could mean that there is a more significant issues somewhere else on your car — like an alignment or axle problem. Paying attention not only to the performance of your vehicle but to the tread on your tires is one of the most straightforward preventative steps you can take as a car owner.
Zeck Ford has the biggest selection of tires in the Leavenworth, Kansas area. With brands like BF Goodrich, Bridgestone, Dunlop, Firestone, Goodyear, Michelin, and more, you can count on us to provide you with the best tires and best service each time. Our service center is filled with knowledgeable mechanics with the know-how to work on any car. To schedule an appointment, call us at (913) 634-2871. We’re ready to help you maintain fresh tread on your tires for the life of your car.