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When Do You Need New Tires? | Nissan of Clinton, NC

New Tires DIY - Nissan of Clinton.jpg

It can be easy to forget about tires in the midst of all your other car maintenance routines -- oil changes, brake checks, engine coolant, and more just seems like more of a pressing issue at times. However, tires are critical to your safety and to the health of your vehicle. Maintaining proper tire pressure levels is a necessity, and tread that’s too worn can leave you open to sliding on slick, wet roads. Poor tire health may even affect your gas mileage!

So how can you tell when you need new tires? First of all, you should be keeping track of how long you’ve had the tires in question. Ten years is the absolute maximum you should leave a tire on your vehicle, and that’s only if you have the best driving habits all the time. Five years is a good marker; you should begin inspecting your tires regularly after they hit the five-year mark.

When inspecting your tires, here are a few things you should look for:

Bulges or Cracks

A tire begins to bulge as it deflates. This indicates low tire pressure, which can easily be fixed by filling it up to the recommended level. However, if the same tire continues to deflate or you can see gouges or cracks, you might have a slow air leak on your hands.

Tread Wear

This is where you use the good ol’ penny test -- place a penny upside down between the treads of your tires. If you can see the top of Lincoln’s head, the treads have worn too long and you need to get your tires replaced.

Tire Pressure

This is obvious, but keep temperature in mind. Cold temperatures cause tires to deflate faster, while hot temperatures cause heat build-up, which can lead to more frequent blowouts.

When replacing tires, you should always replace them in pairs or in full sets of four to maintain an equal balance and optimize the safety of your vehicle.

Flat tire DIY - Nissan of Clinton.jpg
There are many obstacles you may face when driving, but one concern you needn’t ever worry about is changing a flat tire. This simple process may be daunting the first time around, but once you’ve mastered the skill, it will be a breeze.

Here are the basic steps to changing a flat tire:

  • Keep your tires maintained by evaluating the air pressure and tread regularly, making it less likely to get a flat tire in the first place.
  • Be sure that you have an inflated tire, a simple jack, and a lug wrench tucked away before you go on any trip.
  • If you get a flat, stay calm and turn on your hazard lights. Slowly and safely pull over to the side of the road.
  • Use the wrench to loosen the lug nuts, though you do not need to remove them yet.
  • Use the jack to lift the vehicle up off the ground. This might be a good step to practice ahead of time.
  • Remove the lug nuts, which you should have already loosened, and then remove the old tire.
  • Place the spare tire the whole way onto the wheelbase, and then put back the lug nuts. You do not need to put them on tightly, yet.
  • Use the jack to slowly lower the vehicle back to the ground, and then remove the jack from underneath the vehicle.
  • Now it’s time to tighten the lug nuts, but be sure to tighten each of them at the same pace – rotating from one to another, instead of tightening each one entirely, individually.
  • Lastly, put everything away, including your flat tire. Please do not leave your flat on the side of the road!
For more guides and information, visit us anytime at Nissan of Clinton.
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