As a car owner, one of the best ways to protect your vehicle is through regular maintenance. From getting regular oil changes to swapping out your cabin filters, there’s plenty to keep up with, and following a consistent maintenance schedule helps to ensure each aspect of your vehicle is performing optimally and to prevent damage from occurring. One of the most important parts of your vehicle to monitor and maintain is your tires, which includes rotating and replacing them. Our team at Huffines Hyundai Plano created this guide exploring what a tire rotation is and how often to get one.
What Is a Tire Rotation?
A tire rotation is a standard routine maintenance practice that involves moving the tires on your car from one placement to another. This helps create uniform tread on the tires, preventing certain tires from wearing down before the others. Balancing the tread can create a safer driving experience and help prolong the life of your tires. Not only does this help protect your wallet, but it can make it easier when you do need to replace your tires because you can replace all four in one go.
Different types of vehicles follow different rotation patterns. One of the most common patterns involves moving the tires front to back and left to right. Following this pattern, the front right tire moves to become the rear left, the previous rear left moves forward to the front left, the front left tire shifts back to the rear right, and the back right tire moves forward to become the front right tire. However, if tires have directional tread or if you’re driving a performance vehicle with differently sized front and rear tires, you’ll need to follow a different pattern.
After a tire rotation, it’s important to check the pressure of your tires. They may need air in them to ensure the proper pressure because most vehicles have different recommendations for front wheels compared to rear wheels. Your owner’s manual might list your car’s recommended PSI, but you can also visit our service center at Huffines Hyundai Plano so that we can rotate your tires and adjust their pressure properly. Our expert maintenance team can determine the best pattern for you to follow and recommend whether you need additional services, such as an alignment.
How Often Should You Rotate Your Tires?
Just like with other forms of regular maintenance, how often you should rotate your tires differs for each vehicle. The best way to ensure you rotate them on a proper schedule is to consult your owner’s manual. This provides the manufacturer’s recommendations for the appropriate frequency to rotate your tires based on the number of miles you’ve driven since your last rotation.
The most significant factor affecting the interval for rotating your tires is the type of engine and transmission layout you have. The drivetrain impacts how often to rotate your tires because it affects what you’re most often using your tires to do as you drive. While it varies per model, the general recommendation for all-wheel-drive vehicles is to rotate them every 3,000 to 5,000 miles, while the guidelines for front-wheel-drive and rear-wheel-drive vehicles is to rotate them every 5,000 to 7,000 miles.
Most of these intervals align with how often manufacturers recommend you change your oil. This can make it easier for you to stay on top of your vehicle’s maintenance requirements. For example, ask the mechanic to check your tires and recommend if they need rotating or replacing the next time you get an oil change, or ask them to check your oil levels at your next tire rotation service. These are both typically easy services to add during a maintenance appointment.
It’s also good practice to rotate your tires if you recently purchased a pre-owned vehicle, especially if you bought the vehicle directly from its previous owner. It’s impossible to know for sure the last time the previous owner actually had the tires rotated without a mechanic’s opinion, so be sure to have your tires’ tread and alignment checked and to see if your new-to-you car needs any other services.
Why Is It Important To Rotate Your Tires?
Rotating your tires is essential for balancing their tread, which is crucial for a safe driving experience. When your tires’ tread depth wears down evenly, it can keep certain parts of your tires from becoming bald too soon and help you avoid creating an uneven driving surface. Balanced wear is also helpful for maintaining balanced traction as you drive. This is essential for ensuring your vehicle is able to respond quickly and appropriately in different driving situations.
For example, good tread and traction are necessary for driving safely in different weather conditions. Tires with deep grooves help you drive through water, essentially moving the water away from the tires while the rubber itself stays in contact with the road. Rotating your tires balances the tread, helping to preserve it to prevent you from hydroplaning. This tread also helps provide traction if you’re driving in snow or on rough terrain, such as on a dirt or gravel road.
Tire rotation can also help prevent serious tire failure. For example, tires create friction and heat as they spin on the road, but the tread helps create a cooling effect. You can only imagine how hot tires and pavement can get in the Texas heat, and healthy tread keeps things cool. Balancing the tread is effective for reducing the risk of tire blowouts, too. Failing to move your tires around puts the same wear on the same areas consistently, increasing your likelihood of them becoming bald and blowing out from their intense wear.
That concludes our guide about how often to rotate your tires and why it’s an important part of vehicle maintenance. If you think it’s time for your next tire rotation or you want a second opinion, contact us to schedule your service today. At Huffines Hyundai Plano, our factory-trained technicians use high-quality parts and provide you with the best care you can trust. Don’t forget to check out our parts specials to see how you may be able to save during your next visit.