The tires on a car or truck are the only part of the vehicle touching the road, which is why regular tire rotation is so important. The goal of tire rotation is to help ensure even tread wear, which will extend the life of the tire and improve handling and safety. The best way to rotate the tires is to follow the rotation pattern recommended by your vehicle manufacturer. If your owner’s manual does not have a rotation schedule, the tire service specialists at your local dealership can recommend a rotation pattern for your specific vehicle.
The recommended rotation pattern for your vehicle will depend on the type of drive — front-wheel, rear-wheel, all-wheel or four-wheel drive — and whether your vehicle has directional tires. Directional tires have arrows on the sidewall and are meant to turn in one direction, so they cannot be moved from front to back.
For vehicles with directional tires, the typical Tire Rotation pattern involves moving the front tires to the rear and switching the two rear tires to opposite sides of the car. For example, the right front tire would move to the rear on the left side and the left rear tire would go to the front on the right side.
Regardless of the tire rotation pattern used, it is important to remove the entire wheel and tire from your vehicle before starting the rotation. This will allow you to check the condition of each tire and rim for any signs of uneven or improper wear. If you notice any issues, it is important to take care of them as soon as possible to avoid the potential for a tire failure that could cause your vehicle to crash.
Not only does uneven tire wear shorten the life of your tires, it can also cause other components in your vehicle to wear out faster than they should. For example, if the front tires of your vehicle are wearing down more quickly than the rear, it can lead to a loss of traction while driving, which can put you and other drivers at risk of a crash.
In addition, not rotating the tires can void your tire warranty. Fortunately, the process of rotating your tires is very simple and should only take a professional a few minutes to complete.
In addition to increasing the life of your tires and ensuring a safer driving experience, regular tire rotation will also help maintain proper fuel efficiency for your vehicle. Uneven tire wear can cause your engine to work harder to power the vehicle, which in turn can reduce gas mileage. Fortunately, by following the tire rotation recommendations in your owner’s manual and getting your tires regularly rotated, you can help improve your fuel economy.