Choosing the right tyres for your vehicle can be both confusing and time consuming. Tyres are a vital component of your vehicle and have a big influence on its performance.
- Continuing to use worn tyres or using the wrong tyres could mean the difference between life and death.
- A tyre with the minimum legal tread depth of 1.5mm may increase braking distance in wet weather by as much as 70%, compared to a new tyre.
- Tyres are high technology items that have been continually refined and improved by over 100 years of research and development.
- Tyres are often perceived as expensive but in the past 15 years the rise in the cost of tyres has been 20% less than the rise in the cost of living.
- Replacing worn tyres is a good investment in safe driving.
Since 1973, every new car sold in Australia has had to be fitted with a placard giving details of the manufacturer's recommended tyre sizes for that vehicle.
- The placard can normally be found on the doorjamb, glove box cover, or under the bonnet.
- You should stick to the recommended tyre sizes.
- Fitting a narrower tyre or one with a lower load rating is likely to cost you more in the long run.
- You need the right tyre to ensure maximum life and lowest cost.
- Proper use and maintenance can reduce a tyre's life by 60% or more.
- Check the tyres load rating and consider the effect on tyre life.
- You should also be wary of buying second hand tyres.
- Second hand tyres can be risky unless you know their history and can be sure they haven't been damaged or abused.
- A high performance tyre will cost more and may only last 20,000 km compared to 60,000 km or more for a tyre designed for longer life.
- If in doubt, talk to a reputable tyre dealer for advice on your needs.
Once you are sure about what size and type of tyre you need, you can then check tyre company internet sites for what is available and discuss your needs with tyre dealers.
- If you take your vehicle on long journeys, make sure the tyre manufacturer is represented in the areas you're going to.
- If you have a warranty problem with your new tyres or need to replace one of them, you need to be able to match the other tyres on your vehicle.
- When shopping around, make sure the quote you receive includes the tyre's make and model, its size, load rating and speed rating.
- The quoted cost should also include fitting, wheel alignment, balancing, new valves, and disposal of the old tyres.
- There are some difficult decisions to make, but a little research combined with advice from a reputable tyre dealer can save you a lot of time and heart ache and help to ensure you choose the right tyres for your vehicle.
A set of new tyres on your car can cost upwards of $400. It's worthwhile looking after them. Regular checking is vital - if you don't catch a leaking tyre early it could be ruined.
- Check your tyre pressures every two weeks and use a reliable pressure gauge (check them when they are cold).
- Make sure you maintain the recommended pressure at all times.
- Rotate your tyres at every service, or at least every six months to ensure long life.
- Front tyres on a front wheel drive car wear two and a half times faster than the rear tyres.
- Utes, panel vans and 4WDs - check the pressure is right for your load. Check the tyre placard and /or the owners manual for the correct pressure for the load.
- Avoid scuffing and hitting kerbs when parking your vehicle. Make sure all your tyres have a valve cap, as it is the main seal.