Tire rotation is a vehicle maintenance task where each tire is spun in a specified manner. Regular tire rotation reduces premature wearing and may also be required as part of your manufacturer’s warranty.
WHY ARE TIRE ROTATIONS CRUCIAL?
• Tire rotation maximizes tire tread. The tread is that area of the tire that comes into contact with the road surface. As positions are changed constantly, there is even wear across the tread.
• Uniform tread wear leads to uniform tread depth. As a result, traction is increased, and performance stress is balanced on all four tires. A uniform depth also improves the braking power of the vehicle and provides better navigation experience around corners and turns.
• Tire rotation gives an estimate about tire pressure, which can then be adjusted accordingly to prevent risks of accidents and tire blowouts.
• Since tire rotation involves visual and physical contact with the tires, any damage or indication of damage can be identified and rectified early.
The frequency of tire rotation is specified in the manufacturer’s manual. A usual time period is every 6 months or for every 5,000 miles. You can get your tires rotated when you change your engine oil.
WHAT IS THE RIGHT WAY TO ROTATE TIRES?
The right way to rotate tires depends on various factors including tire type, vehicle drive wheel type (2-wheel, 4-wheel or all-wheel), and the size of the wheels on the front and the rear (same size or different-sized).
SOME COMMON TIRE ROTATION METHODS
- Tires are rotated front to back. They are cross rotated in case there is uneven wear.
- In vehicles featuring a front-wheel drive, the tires on the front are rotated backward. The rear tires are moved forward diagonally.
- In 4-wheel and rear-drive vehicles, the rear tires are repositioned to the front. Tires on the front are rotated back diagonally. For example, the front tire on the right of the vehicle is moved backward in the left direction.
- For back and front tires that vary in sizes, tires are swapped side-to-side, meaning they exchange places with a same-sized tire. For example, if the tires on the front are smaller and those on the rear are bigger, then the small tires are switched side to side as are the large ones on the back.
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