Sunscreen, beach towel, water; we are off for the summer. But did you check the safety of your tires?
Summer driving can be just as dangerous as winter driving, especially if the tires on your vehicle are not properly maintained. I recently attended the Super Mom event with Cooper Tire Company, to learn about their new Cooper CS5 tires, tire care and maintenance.
There are several important things that are good to know about your tires and tire safety. Take note of these tire tips to keep you and your family safer on the road.
How much air goes into your tires?
On the side of your tires is a recommended PSI, however, that is a recommendation for the tire, not your vehicle. Somewhere in your vehicle, usually the door frame or gas, is a placard that will give you the amount of air pressure needed for your vehicle to operate safely.
How much tread do I need on my tires?
Tires need to be replaced when the tread is worn to 2/32 of an inch – the more tread that is on the pavement the better traction you will have.
There are two ways to test your tread depth on your tires:
1) The Lincoln Penny test. If part of Lincoln’s head is covered by the tread, then you have good tread on your tire. If all of Lincoln’s head is showing, it is time to replace your tire.
2) A tire tread tool measures the tread on your tires.
Cooper Tires is taking it a step farther with their wear square on the new Cooper CS5. The CS5’s have a square on the tire that shows you how worn your tire is. The square disappears one line at a time, until you only have one line left and it is time to replace the tire.
Proper rotation can increase the lifespan of your tires. Refer to your owner’s manual for exact guidelines, but typically it is good to rotate your tires every 5000-8000 miles, or when you have your oil changed. After you have your tires rotated, check the air pressure to make sure it meets your vehicle’s recommendation.
What to know when replacing your tires.
As a female consumer, I have learned my most powerful tool is knowledge, and Cooper Tire Company helped me learn a few more things about when to buy tires, where to have new tires put, and how to know if I am making the right decision.
Tires absolutely need replaced when you have 2/32” of tread left or less – this is dangerous.
It is best to purchase 4 new tires, so they have the same wear and you can rotate them.
If you are only purchasing 2 new tires, then the new tires need to go on the back, because your back tires control your traction.
The most important lesson I learned during the SuperMom event was to find a tire dealership that I trust. While knowledge is power, it is good to have someone that I can ask questions of and get honest answers.