Taking care of our tires is an important part of car care for Schaumburg drivers. We know they have to be replaced when they wear out, but tires also require some important preventive maintenance. This maintenance will improve gas mileage and extend the life of the tires, so it’s well worth the effort and expense for Schaumburg car owners to get it done. Tire maintenance includes keeping tires properly inflated, rotating tires and balancing wheels.
The recommended tire pressure for a vehicle’s tires is printed on a sticker on the inside of the driver’s side doorjamb. A lot of engineering goes into calculating the correct pressure, so it’s a vital number for Schaumburg car owners to know. Not following this recommendation can throw off the suspension system and can lead to pricey tire damage. Underinflated tires wear out more quickly than properly inflated tires. Vehicles also get better traction, handling and gas mileage on properly inflated tires. Check your tire pressure at least once a week and add air if necessary.
Don’t be tempted to add a bit of extra air to your tires when you fill them. Overinflated tires will cause the center tread to wear unevenly because of improper contact with the road. It will also curtail the handling performance of your vehicle.
Rotating tires allows all four tires on a vehicle to wear evenly. Front tires get more wear than rear tires because they do most of the work on turns. Tire rotation allows all of the tires to spend time on the front of the car so they all experience the extra wear.
For most vehicles, tire rotation is simply a matter of moving the front tires to the rear and vice versa. Some vehicles, however, recommend a cross-rotational pattern. Other vehicles use asymmetrical tires, which means the right tires have to stay on the right side of the car and the left tires on the left. Some vehicles use differently sized wheels on the front and back of the car and should not have their tires rotated.
What kind of rotation do you need? Check your owner’s manual or talk to your friendly and honest Schaumburg Automedics tech. Your owner’s manual will have information about how to rotate your vehicle’s tires as well as letting you know how often you should get it done. For most vehicles, that’s usually every 5,000 miles. Your friendly and honest Schaumburg Automedics service professional can also offer auto advice about tire rotation. A quick tire inspection can also indicate whether or not your tires are due to be rotated.
When it comes to tire maintenance for Schaumburg car owners, wheel balancing is usually what we know least about. Balancing a wheel is necessary to keep it in constant contact with the road. If a tire is not balanced properly, it actually hops along the roadway. You can feel this hopping as a vibration in your steering wheel if the unbalanced tire is a front tire. You’ll feel the vibration through your seat if a rear tire is unbalance. Properly balancing your tires is vital and will extend their life span, improve handling and improve the safety of your vehicle. When you replace your tires, the new tires need to be balanced.
Never use different sized tires on the same axle of a vehicle. In other words, your front tires need to be the same size and your rear tires need to be the same size. Mixing sizes can lead to some serious handling problems for Schaumburg drivers.
If you have an all-wheel drive or four-wheel drive vehicle all four tires need to be the same size. If your tires are wearing out, you can sometimes make a new tire purchase fit within your budget by only buying two tires at a time. When you do this, the new tires should be installed on the rear of the vehicle. Rear tires are more in need of the traction than your front tires to avoid spinning out on slippery surfaces. If you drive a vehicle around Chicago, you need tires, so Schaumburg car owners need to know how to care for them. The safety of your sedan can depend on the condition of your tires.
When Schaumburg motorists need to replace tires, they need to know how many they should get, and on which axle they should be placed. Replacing a damaged tire may leave you with three others with significant wear, which could affect your traction control, stability control, and anti-lock brake systems.
If you can’t afford to replace all four tires at once, you should at least replace two on the same axle. New tires should always be put on the rear axle for stability in slippery conditions. Your friendly and honest Schaumburg Automedics tire professional can help you ascertain when your worn tires should be replaced, if you can have a damaged tire corrected as well as selecting the right tires for your needs.
When we shop for shoes, most of us know that we can get two pairs of cheap shoes or one good pair for about the same price. And since the two cheap pairs wear out in about the same time as the good pair, there really is no difference in cost. If you like having a closet full of shoes to match your moods and outfits, then cheap shoes can be what you want. But if you spend a lot of time on your feet, you probably know that cheap shoes can come with an added cost of sore feet and other foot ailments. When you add in the benefits of comfort and protection, the more expensive shoes are actually the better value.
Buying tires at Schaumburg Automedics in Schaumburg is a lot like buying shoes, except that Schaumburg motorists’ vehicles don’t have changeable apparel and don’t need a closet full of tires to match. Vehicles spend a lot of time on their tires—all the time, in fact—so they need tires that can stand up to the job. Tires are work shoes: they have to deal with a lot of Illinois road conditions, all while carrying the weight of a vehicle and its passengers.
Bad tires, like cheap shoes, can also be a safety concern for Chicago area drivers. Tires need good traction, and they need to be strong enough to handle the loads they carry. Vehicles that carry heavy loads or tow trailers around Schaumburg need tires with a high load rating, in the same way that you are better off on a rough Illinois mountain trail with sturdy hiking boots rather than flip-flops.
The best tires on the market are called Tier 1 tires. These are high-quality tires engineered to stand up to a lot of wear while maintaining good traction. They are also the most expensive tires on the Chicago area tire market, although prices don’t vary much from brand to brand.
Tire chain stores in Schaumburg often carry tires with their own brand name. These are private label tires. They are less expensive than Tier 1 tires, but are still a quality product. In fact, many private label tires sold in Chicago are manufactured by the same companies that make Tier 1 tires. Don’t hesitate to ask your Schaumburg Automedics tire professional who makes their private brand.
The cheapest tires on the Illinois tire market are Tier 3 tires. Most of these tires are imported from Asia or South America, and they just don’t have the same standard of engineering behind them that the higher-priced tires have. When it comes to Tier 3 tires, Schaumburg folks get what they pay for.
At Schaumburg Automedics, we sometimes express tire quality in terms of the warranty. In other words, we call a tire a “40-thousand-mile tire,” or a “60-thousand mile tire.” This refers to the number of miles a tire will be under warranty. Tires with a higher mileage warranty are made with higher quality rubber compounds and have more tread. As you might expect, they also cost more than tires with low mileage warranties.
Cheap tires often have no warranty at all. However, if you find yourself in a position where you need new tires and you’re really strapped for cash, purchasing Tier 3 tires is better than waiting until you can afford Tier 1. It’s always better for Schaumburg motorists to drive on new tires, even cheap ones, than driving on tires that are worn past their safety limits.
That said, if you’re driving on Tier 3 tires, it’s a good idea to budget and plan to buy higher-quality tires the next go-around. Two sets of cheap tires may wear out in the same time as one set of quality tires, but the quality tires actually cost less than two sets of cheap tires. That’s the great fallacy of cheap tires. In the long run, they actually cost more than good tires, and come with significantly reduced performance and durability to boot. Not exactly the best value for Chicago drivers.
So, some good auto advice for Schaumburg motorists would be to always buy as much tire as you can afford. That way you’ll get the most durability and performance and the most mileage out of every tire. Plus, with a better tire, there’s some peace of mind that comes with knowing you won’t have to purchase tires as often.
Good car care requires checking your tires occasionally for tread wear and road damage. Practicing this preventive maintenance can help you avoid flats and blowouts.
Repair or Replace? That’s a question Schaumburg drivers ask when they have tire damage. Some punctures cannot be repaired because of their size or location. Punctures larger than a quarter of an inch are considered too large to be safely repaired. Punctures in the sidewall or near the shoulders may not be able to be repaired. And sometimes there is internal damage revealed on inspection that indicates the tire should not be repaired.
Run flat tires should not be repaired. Repairing high performance tires may make them unsuitable for motorsports. Your friendly and honest Schaumburg Automedics service specialist can check your damaged tire and tell you if it can be safely repaired or if it should be replaced – and then help you get back on the road.
Tires are a significant purchase so knowing when tires should be replaced is important for Schaumburg drivers. Tires will just wear out with normal use. The depth of the tread on your tire determines how well it will stop, start and steer – especially in wet conditions. 4/32th of an inch of tire tread is considered a safe amount of tread.
Uneven tread wear can be a symptom of other problems and simply replacing your tires will not prevent the same uneven wear from happening to the new tires. We can check your tires for excessive or uneven wear. Unusual wear may lead to further examination of steering, suspension or alignment troubles. We can help with needed repairs and with getting you the right tires for your needs.
Today’s tires and wheels offer a lot of options for every Schaumburg driver’s style, habits and driving conditions.
Tires are designed for high-performance in winter or summer and even come in a long-wearing variety for all Illinois seasons.
Schaumburg off-roaders should be excited about the options available to them as well. The tread on off-road tires is designed to handle the wear from bumps and rocks. The tires’ high profile protects rims from damage.
But what if you own an SUV but aren’t interested in off-roading around Schaumburg? You can change out those high-profile beasts for a lower, wider look if it suits your style.
Schaumburg Automedics tire professionals can offer great auto advice on how to choose tires that match your needs and style.
The same goes for wheels. When Schaumburg motorists shop for new wheels, they can be hard-pressed to make a selection from the thousands of styles available at Illinois tire stores. If they choose a wheel that is the same size as the ones that came with their vehicle, they can get them changed out and get back on the road, no worries. But if they change the wheel size, then they may need to make some vital adjustments to their vehicle.
Upsizing a wheel may mean changing the suspension on the sedan. The wheel and tire need to fit inside the wheel well without any rubbing during turns or when driving over bumps. Rubbing can cause uneven tire wear and even damage the tires or cause safety issues.
Upsizing wheels also increases the unsprung weight of the vehicle which has a major impact on braking performance. The larger wheels increase rotational inertia, as well, which translates to longer stopping distance and lower brake performance. Upsized wheels may require upgraded brakes. Further, wheel size is used to calculate the speed and mileage of a vehicle. Changing wheel size will cause the speedometer and odometer to give inaccurate readings unless the vehicle’s computer is re-programmed to compensate for the difference.
So if you want to customize your sedan with new wheels, you should consult with a wheel and tire professional at Schaumburg Automedics in Schaumburg to ensure you get the style you want without sacrificing safety or performance — and without damaging your vehicle.
If you just need to purchase new tires, a tire professional can also help you select the tires that are best for your driving needs and habits. The right tires will protect you and your sedan on the road.
So personalize your vehicle, but don’t forget that good car care will keep that sassy ride on the road in Schaumburg a lot longer.
Every Schaumburg vehicle owner has to purchase tires at some time or another, so it’s a good idea to understand what the choices are. The best seasonal performance is achieved by purchasing tires to match the season you are driving in. Summer tires are designed for hot temperatures. The tread is engineered for good traction on dry or rainy Illinois roads. But the rubber compound in summer tires gets stiff when temperatures drop below 45°F, and snow and mud can pack into the tread, reducing the traction of the tire.
Winter tires are designed for good traction on snowy surfaces. The tread actually throws snow off of the tire as the wheel turns. The rubber compound in a winter tire is soft so that it will remain flexible at Chicago temperatures below 45°F. At higher temperatures, however, the softer rubber wears down rapidly.
All-season tires sacrifice some of the extreme performance of summer or winter tires, but they maintain adequate traction in either type of Schaumburg weather.
So your first consideration when buying a tire is where you live in Illinois and where you usually drive. If you require maximum summer and winter performance you can go with dedicated summer and winter tires; you would just need to change out your tires each spring and fall.
For serious winter driving in Illinois, look for tires with a severe snow rating. These tires are labeled with a mountain-and-snowflake logo.
Your second important consideration is the quality of tire to purchase. Summer, winter and all-season tires come in a variety of grades and styles at Illinois tire stores. Schaumburg motorists will want to purchase a tire that will give them good wear and that will handle their driving style and road conditions. Your Schaumburg Automedics tire professional can give you auto advice as to which type of tire will best fit your needs.
Schaumburg drivers who drive off-road around Illinois may want to look at a high-grade tire that is designed for off-road use. These tires are designed to handle the extra wear of off-roading while still giving good performance on Schaumburg streets and freeways. There are a number of options to choose from so that you can find the right tire whether you are only an occasional off-road explorer or a serious rock climber.
New wheels can be purchased in Schaumburg as a statement of style or to add personality to your sedan. There are almost unlimited options. If you change the size of the wheels on your sedan, however, you will need to get some professional help to make your vehicle compatible with its new wheels. Talk to your Schaumburg Automedics service professional for more information about tires.
Have you noticed an increase in price when you get a flat fixed in Schaumburg or your tires rotated? It might be the result of your TPMS, or Tire Pressure Monitoring System.
The federal government began requiring a TPMS system on 2008 model year passenger vehicles and light trucks. Some 2006 and 2007 models may have them as well. The system has a warning light that is mounted on the dashboard that will go on if one of the tires becomes severely under inflated.
Why the new requirement? Because underinflated tires are the number one cause of tire failure. Tire blowouts cause detrimental and sometimes fatal accidents. Underinflated tires also need longer stopping distance and can skid, both of which also present dangers on Illinois roads. Many flat tires can also be prevented by proper tire inflation, and though this may seem an economic consideration, Schaumburg motorists who have changed a flat on the side of the road recognize that this has serious safety concerns as well.
Advances in tire technology, specifically the development of radial tires has made it harder for Schaumburg auto owners to recognize when a tire is underinflated. At a recommended pressure of 35 psi, a tire is seriously underinflated at 26 psi. But the tire doesn’t look low on air until it reaches 20 psi. This raises concerns about vehicle owners being able to tell when their sedans are a safety hazard on the road. Hence, the TPMS.
So, like seatbelts, the critical TPMS system is expected to save a lot of lives. The technology has been in use in race cars for years, and now it’s being mandated for all passenger cars, SUV’s, mini-vans and pick-ups. Besides warning Schaumburg drivers when their tires need air, the system is required to indicate when it is malfunctioning.
This increased safety won’t come without increased costs to Schaumburg drivers. Estimates regarding the cost of maintaining the TPMS on your vehicle run from $27 to $100. Also, there will be an added cost for tire repair. Schaumburg service centers have had to purchase new scanning equipment to work with TPMS sensors and other critical equipment to repair tires and wheels equipped with TPMS. Schaumburg Automedics service professionals have to be trained to use the new equipment. These costs will have to be passed on to Schaumburg drivers.
Further, whenever a tire is changed, the Schaumburg Automedics service specialist will have to deal with the TPMS. Sensors will have to removed, then re-installed and re-activated. Sometimes the act of changing a tire will damage a sensor, and it will need to be replaced. These extra services will come at an added charge to Schaumburg drivers.
Tire rotations will require that the TPMS be re-programmed. And whenever a vehicle’s battery is disconnected, the TPMS will require re-programming as well.
The TPMS itself will require attention – it contains batteries and sensors that will wear out and need to be replaced.
So, if you’ve noticed an increase in the cost for car care at your Schaumburg tire center, it may not be the economy. It could be the cost of the TPMS in newer vehicles. Before you dash off an angry letter to Congress, however, stop and consider what you’re paying for. If predictions are correct, the TPMS will save lives, and that will be a benefit to all of us.
Of course, no warning system will save lives in Schaumburg if drivers don’t pay attention to it. And remember that the warning doesn’t come on until the tire is severely under inflated – you still should check your tire pressure at least once a month. Schaumburg car owners can prevent accidents and potentially save lives without a warning system by keeping their tires properly inflated.
Most Chicago drivers know that tires wear out and that the wear has to do with tread depth. Most of us have heard that “bald” tires are dangerous, but most of us picture a tire with no tread at all when we think of a bald tire. And when we take our vehicles in for preventive maintenance, the technician tells us they’re need to be replaced long before all the tread is worn off. Just how much tire tread wear is too much? And how can you tell? Tires are expensive and their condition is important to the safe handling of a vehicle, so it’s vital for Chicago motorists to know the answers to these questions.
First of all, it’s critical to understand that there may be a legal limit to tread wear. If your tires are worn past this limit, you have to replace them to be in compliance with Illinois auto safety laws. That’s why measuring your tread wear is part of a vehicle safety inspection.
In some jurisdictions, tread must be at least 1.6 millimeters or 2/32 of an inch thick. This standard has been in effect since 1968. But this standard has recently been called into question, and some Schaumburg auto owners are arguing that it be changed.
The safety issue that has brought this standard under scrutiny is the ability of a vehicle to stop on a wet surface. When a vehicle has trouble stopping, most Schaumburg drivers immediately look at the brakes as the source of the problem. But tires are crucial to safe stopping distances because they provide the traction required in a stop.
A tire’s contact with the road surface creates traction, which allows for effective braking. On a wet surface, a tire only has traction if it can get to the road’s surface. So tire tread is designed to channel water out from under the tire to allow it to stay in contact with the road. If the tire can’t shift the water, then it starts to “float.” This condition is called hydroplaning. It is very dangerous for Schaumburg motorists since the vehicle won’t stop no matter how hard the driver presses the brakes. Steering control is also lost.
A recent study tested the stopping ability of a passenger car and a full-sized pick-up on a road surface covered with only a dime’s depth of water (less than a millimeter). The vehicles were traveling at 70 mph (112 kph) when they stopped on the wet surface. At 2/32 tread depth, the stopping distance was double that of a new tire. The passenger car was still traveling at 55 mph when it reached the stopping distance it experienced with new tires.
Let’s suppose that you’re on a busy Chicago highway in a light drizzle and a vehicle stops suddenly in front of you. You just bought new tires and you brake hard, missing the vehicle with only inches to spare. If you hadn’t bought those new tires, you would have crashed into that vehicle at 55 mph. That is a major difference.
What if your tires had a tread depth of 4/32? You would have crashed into that vehicle at 45 mph. Still not a good situation. But it’s better.
Now what if you were driving that pick-up truck? You wouldn’t have missed that vehicle in the first place, and you would have crashed at higher rates of speed in both of the other scenarios. The heavier your vehicle, the longer its stopping distance. It’s a matter of physics.
The results of this test has led Consumer Reports and others to ask that the standard for tread wear from 2/32 to 4/32. The increased standard will improve safety on the road and save lives here in Illinois and nationally.
Of course, until the standard changes, you’ll have to decide whether you’ll be willing to replace your tires a little sooner.
You can use a quarter to tell if your tread wear is down to 4/32. Place the quarter into the tread with George’s head toward the tire and his neck toward you. If the tread doesn’t cover George’s hairline, you’re under 4/32. With a Canadian quarter, the tread should cover the digits of the year.
You can measure the 2/32 tread wear with a penny. If the tread touches the top of Abe’s head, it’s at 2/32. Tires are a significant item for Schaumburg car owners when it comes to car care. But their condition has a major impact on safety. We need to decide whether to sacrifice safety for economy. Keeping our tread wear above 4/32 is good auto advice.
Remember snow tires? They were basically just regular tires with big, knobby lugs to get them through deep snow. They were loud and rode hard, and Schaumburg drivers couldn’t wait to get them off the car. Then along came television advertisements for “all-season” radials. Illinois auto owners ran out and bought some and we thought we were done with snow tires forever.
Tires have come a long way since then. Modern winter tires sold in the Chicago area are much better designed for the wide range of detrimental conditions that come with Illinois winter weather. They are made with a rubber compound that helps them stay flexible in cold weather. Regular tires become hard and stiff at Schaumburg temperatures below 45°F, which reduces their traction. That’s a key concern in winter, especially with snowy or wet Schaumburg conditions. But it also means that Schaumburg drivers are better off with winter tires in cold weather even when it’s dry.
The tread design on winter tires has been improved to actually move snow, slush and water. The lugs and grooves actually throw packed snow out of the tread as the tire rotates. This means the tread is open and ready to move more snow when it rolls around again. Summer tires can actually pack up with snow, which makes them more dangerous than a bald tire.
Many winter tires use a micro-pore compound that lets the tire bite into ice and snow. They have wider grooves around the tire that help expel snow. They have a rounder casing to better cut into the surface of snow. Modern winter tires available at Illinois tire shops also have sipes, or thin slits cut into the tread. The edges of these sipes can grab ice and snow so that the tire retains traction on almost any surface. The sipes also help to expel water and slush from the tread. In short, a lot of time and engineering has gone into improving winter tires.
The all-season tire that is popular among Chicago drivers is actually a compromise between summer and winter performance. This means they give adequate performance for Schaumburg motorists in either season, but aren’t great in either. Summer tires give great performance in hot weather, but lousy performance in winter. Schaumburg drivers need to put more thought into their tire choices these days, but that also means they get a lot better performance for their cash.
If you want the performance that new winter tires can give you, you should have them properly installed at your Schaumburg service center or Schaumburg Automedics. It’s best to purchase four snow tires and put them on all the wheels of your vehicle. But if you only want two, you need to put them on the rear of your vehicle, even if you drive a front-wheel drive vehicle. Schaumburg auto owners always want to put the tires with the best traction on the rear of the vehicle.
Imagine this: You take a corner on an icy Chicago road and your rear end starts to slide. What happened is that the front end slowed for the turn, but the rear end hasn’t figured that out yet. If you have high-traction tires on the front of your vehicle, that makes the problem worse. You’re slowing the front end faster and harder, which makes the back end fishtail even more.
Putting the higher traction tires on the rear will give Schaumburg motorists more control for turns, regardless of the type of vehicle driven. Of course, that makes putting high-traction tires on all of your wheels even smarter. Why not give all of your tires the best traction they can get? Some Schaumburg assume that four-wheel drive or all-wheel drive vehicles only need winter tires on two wheels. Why? Doesn’t it make sense to give all four wheels the same level of traction and control? Four-wheel or all-wheel drive cannot compensate for poor traction.
Another false assumption held by many Schaumburg auto owners is that if you have traction control and anti-lock brakes, you won’t need winter tires. Traction is critical for good acceleration, steering and stopping. And tires provide traction. Traction control and anti-lock brakes can only improve on that traction. The better the traction, the better the traction control and anti-lock brakes will work. In other words, the better the tires, the better those systems will work for Schaumburg drivers.
A Canadian law requires all passenger vehicles, rental cars and taxis registered in Quebec to have winter tires on all four wheels from November 15th until April 1st.
If you’re shopping for winter tires and live where there is a lot of snow in Illinois, look for a mountain with a snowflake in it molded into the tire’s sidewall. This symbol means the tire complies with severe snow standards. All-season tires have an M&S stamped on the sidewall. M&S stands for mud and snow.
For more important auto advice about tires for any Illinois season, speak with your friendly and honest Schaumburg Automedics tire professional. They can help you elect the right tire for your area and for your driving needs. For the best performance from your tires, whatever the season, don’t forget preventive maintenance. Keep your tires up to pressure for best durability, safety and performance, but don’t overinflate them. Remember, good car care provides the safest road for all of us Schaumburg drivers.