Tires are one of the most important purchases for a car owner and can seem like an overwhelming responsibility. Given the infrequency with which you shop for tires and the evolving tire technology, it may feel like buying tires is shopping for a new vehicle altogether. However, it doesn’t have to be tricky when you know what to look for. Here are some tips for buying tires.
Know when to buy
How do you know you need new tires? If you have been using the same tires for the last 10years, you should buy new ones regardless of how much tread they have left. A visual inspection is another way to determine whether your tires need a replacement.
You will know when tires have exhausted their lifespan through signs like uneven wear. Another trick is to stick a penny into the tire tread, and if you can see the whole Lincoln’s head, it is time for new tires. Thankfully you can replace only the worn-out tires.
Not all tires are equal
Before buying any tires for your car, remember that not all tires are created equal. There are many brands of tires, and choosing the right tires depends on so many facets of your car, the weather, and driving habits. You need winter tires with softer rubbers designed to grip the slippery surfaces filled with snow if it is wintertime. In contrast, summer tires last longer in hot climates.
Understand the tire codes
Choosing the right tire means getting down and dirty to decipher the codes on the sidewall of your current tires. It includes numbers and letters that indicate the tire’s size, type, and performance. Alternatively, let an expert check it for you.
Know the size
Know the proper size of the tires your car needs before heading out to the tire retailer’s shop. You can get this information in the car owner’s manual or use a tire dealer who can tell the car’s tire size based on the model and make. However, you still have different size options depending on your needs. You can choose small, less expensive tires or bigger ones to fill the wheel correctly. Whatever the size of tires you choose, the speed and load rating should suit your car’s specifications.
Style and ride quality
The tires also determine the style and ride quality. Thankfully you can use tires to personalize the look of your car, whether you need an elegant, sporty, retro, or rigged look. Note that different tire styles also vary in performance. While low-profile tires give your car a sporty look and better handling capacity, they are prone to damage, have a shorter tread life, and give a rough ride. Therefore you should find the best balance between performance and aesthetics.
Shopping for tires can be daunting, but you can easily find the perfect tires for your car with the proper knowledge and preparation. Alternatively, you can engage a tire expert to help you make an informed choice.