With so many varieties of tires available, choosing the best set for your vehicle can seem difficult, but Be Tire Smart Canada is here to help.
Despite the advanced technology and engineering in today’s automobiles, tires are still the most critical component of any vehicle. From handling and comfort to noise and fuel efficiency, tires play a vital role in the performance, safe operation and environmental impact of your vehicle.
How Often to Replace Your Tires
Even with proper maintenance, all tires will eventually wear out.
An endless number of variables can impact the lifetime of your tires: average driving speed, kilometres driven, climate, extreme weather, and the type of roads you drive on most often can all work to impact a tire’s life.
To help you make an informed decision when purchasing your next set of tires, here are some tire buying tips from Be Tire Smart Canada.
>> See also: “Tire Basics: What Drivers Should Know about Tires”
When to Replace your Tires
All tires sold in Canada are manufactured with “wear bars.” These coloured bars become exposed when there is less than 1.6 mm of tread depth remaining on your tire. Tires must be replaced when the wear bar is visible.
If you are unsure about wear bars and the tread life of your tires, you can also try the “Bluenose” test. Just place a Canadian dime in the tire’s groove, with the Bluenose’s sails pointing down. If you can see the top of the sails, then the tire needs to be replaced.
If you’re unsure when the right time is to replace your tires, be sure to consult your tire technician.
Choosing the Right Tires for Your Vehicle
First, establish whether you need a passenger or light-truck tire. Passenger tires are sufficient for most vehicles, including many SUV and pick-up trucks. Some pick-up and SUV’s require a more robust, light-truck tire, for hauling heavy loads and driving on rough terrain.
Second, determine what you need most from your tires. Many drivers look for higher comfort ratings, lower noise levels and the best fuel efficiency possible. Consider your local climate and daily driving routine and this will help you narrow your focus.
>>See also: “Buying Tires: How to get the Right Tire for You”
Changing Tire Sizes
Different manufacturers may approve alternate tire sizes for certain vehicles, in which the original performance isn’t compromised.
This information is printed on the tire itself, as well as the tire information placard, which is usually attached to the edge of the driver’s side door of your vehicle. Consult your tire technician and manufacturer for more information on changing tire sizes.
New tires should be the same size, and have the same load capacity and speed rating as your vehicle’s original tires. To ensure proper handling, install the same type of tires on all four wheels.