Thursday, 2 October 2008

7 Common Causes of Car Tyre Wear

by James Todman

Check car tyres regularly for any signs of wear. This is important as they are the only point of contact between a car and the road. Any deterioration of the tread or damage to the sidewalls may be risking an accident.

The basic legal requirements for car tyres are:

a) Tread Depth must be a minimum of 1.6mm. This applies to the entire circumference of the tyre. A bald patch on a tyre, where the tread depth is below the minimum requirement, is against the law. Check a tyre after a skid or emergency braking as this is when bald patches can occur.

b) Tyres must be inflated to the correct pressure. Consult the vehicle manufacturer's handbook to find the recommended pressure. Not only is this a legal requirement, it improves the vehicle's handling and reduces fuel consumption.

c) All four car tyres must be compatible and in good condition. If a car tyre needs replacing it will need to be in the same condition as the others otherwise all four will need to be changed.

Factors that can affect the rate of car tyre wear include:

1. Make of Car Tyres

Every car tyre is designed differently to meet specific criteria. Long life tyres are made from a harder rubber compound. This can increase the noise when driving. A softer tyre compound will be quieter but will wear out faster. A car tyre specialist such as Merityre can offer advice on the different types of car tyre.

2. Position of Car Tyre

Front tyres wear out faster than back tyres, especially if the car is front wheel drive. The extra wear is caused by the movement through steering. On a four wheel drive vehicle the front car tyres should exceed 20,000 miles. This is half the expected life of the back tyres.

3. Weight of Vehicle

The heavier the vehicle the faster the car tyres wear.

4. Tyre Pressure

A car tyre that is inflated below its recommended pressure will wear faster because of its higher operating temperature and the extra flexing of the rubber. Over inflation can also increase wear due to the decreased size of the contact area between the tyre and the road.

5. Speed

Driving at high speeds increases the car tyre temperature and accelerates the wear.

6. Car Tyre Alignment

Incorrect alignment of car tyres causes uneven and increased wear.

7. Driving Style

Aggressive cornering, accelerating and braking excessively are all causes of car tyre wear.

One factor that is unavoidable is time. Tyres deteriorate naturally over time due to the effects of the weather. Car tyres on vehicles kept outside will degrade faster than those kept in a garage. Cracking due to sunlight exposure usually becomes evident on car tyres that are five years or older. When this happens, as with any signs of wear, replace the car tyre immediately.

James Todman is the Web Editor for UK Article Marketing. are one of the leading independent car tyre dealers in the UK. Visit their website for free vouchers, including 10% off your next MOT, free wheel alignment check and free locking wheel nuts.

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