Around the Tires

arrow Air Pressure arrow Tread Depth
arrow Winter Tires arrow Tire Replacement
arrow Tire Seasoning arrow Curbstone Parking
arrow Tire Damages arrow Tire Storing
arrow ...another comment on tire damages    
Air Pressure
Low air pressure leads to overheating of the tire and in consequence to a danger of a tire damage. Above all low air pressure interferes the driving stability, provokes abrasion and fuel consumption.Therefore: check every 14 days air pressure on cold tires. Basically never a mistake: Fill in 0,2 bar more than required, because the automobile manufacturers often specify only the minimum pressure because of reasons of comfort . Don't forget the spare wheel! Always screw on the valve plates, change missing ones immediately.
Tread Depth
Already at a tread depth of 4 mm the adhesion of the tire, in particular of the wide tires diminishes at wet conditions. The tires cannot push away the water film , they lose contact with the road, the vehicle cannot be steered or stopped. Therefore: don't rack out the tires until the legitimate minimum tread depth of 1,6 mm. Depending on the wideness change the summer tires not later than by 2 to 2,5 mm and winter tires already by 4 mm tread depth rest.
Winter tires in Hills
At light snow and mud M+S tires have a lot better adhesion than summer tires. The winter capability of wide and high speed tires is most of the time not satisfying. Therefore: Covert to M+S tires in areas with a lot of snow. Increase air pressure to 0,2 bar. Pay attention to the speed limit. Apply maximum tire high speed badge on field of view of the driver, in case it is below the maximum speed of the vehicle.
Tire Replacement
If using different types of tires the driving capabilities are getting worse. The use of mixed tires (diagonal/radial tires) is even prohibited.Hence:use the same type of tires on all 4 wheels (at least on one axis). Include spare wheel when replacing tires. In case of doubt insert better tires on the rear suspension. Only the types of tires which are specified in your registration papers are allowed. In case of a new installation please use also new valves.
Tire Seasoning
Tires are getting "old" even when you don't use them! The safety of old tires decreases drastically. Therefore: do not use tires which are older than 8 years.
Curbstone Parking
Bounding hard into curbstones is dangerous. It can lead to hidden damages of the tires which you notice not until later. Therefore: Roll over curbstones slowly and only in right angle, don't squeeze the tires over the edges of the curbstone and don't place the car on only one part of the footprint.
Tire Damages
Open damages of the rubber material of the tire causes wetness to enter partly as far as the substructure of the tire and this can lead to corrosion and weakness of the steel wires of the belt. A very often consequence is a dissolution of the cap of the tire.Therefore: check tires on a regular basis for irrupted foreign objects, bulges and fissures. Replace tires which are damaged immediately. The retraction of a tube is only an emergency solution.
Tire Storing
Rubber is aging faster through warmth, moistness and solar irradiation and is being attacked by many dissolvers.Therefore: store tires in a cool and dry room, if possible also in a dark room, tires without rims in standing position, otherwise in lying position. Please avoid contact of the tires with gasoline, oil or fat.
...another comment on tire damages
The tires belong to the parts of the car which have the most significant importance for the safety. It is expected that tire damages occur not very often. But still every year in Germany ca. 3 million tires quit service too early. But the reasons for the damages are only in the most rare cases represented by the manufacturer. Much more tire damages are leaded back to :
Extraneous cause like e.g. entrance and cut damages.
Application errors, e.g. driving with low air pressure, crossing curbstone etc.

The problem is that tires "remember" if they have been treated the wrong way. The careless crossing of a curbstone or driving with low air pressure can be a long time gone before you see an external defect of the tire. If a tire damage occurs which can be traced back to the manufacturer, the tire should be submitted via a specialist shop to the manufacturer for reclamation. If the claim is admitted, the tire manufacturer recompenses (depending on the tread depth rest of the tire) a part of the costs of the tire.

If the claim is not admitted with an unfounded justification, there is the possibility to execute a gratis control checking through another tire manufacturer. If the tire damage causes other damages on the vehicle or even personal injuries the legal regulations of the producers liability take effect. Because of the complex juridical problems it is recommended in such a case to call in a lawyer.

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