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Which Tires Wear Faster?

Looking to install new pairs of tires? Read on for the best tips on choosing the right tires for your vehicle.

Car owners often forget that the rubber is one of the essential car elements, which directly affects our safety. But when tires wear down, every driver sadly realizes that it’s time to get new ones.

Tire wear depends on car serviceability, driving style, speed, road conditions, car weight, tire pressure, brake disc geometry, wheel drive type, etc.

In RWD cars, the load is on the rear-wheel drive. As a result, the middle of the rear tires wears a lot, while the fronts are worn at the sides because they are the steering wheels that change the inclination angle all the time.

Wear is mainly caused by the massive front part of a vehicle; the steering wheel rotation creates increased loads for the front-wheel drive. RWD cars usually have their rear tires worn out faster, or both front and rear tires wear out equally.

What causes tires to wear out fast?

  • Weak/excessive tire pressure (under-inflated tires often wear out on the edges, over-inflated tires wear out the middle of the thread);
  • Delayed tire rotation (if you don’t rotate your tires in due time, two of your tires will wear out faster). If the difference in tread height between the front and rear tires has reached 1.5 mm (0.06″), it’s a clear signal to rotate the tires. Otherwise, the service life of the rears will be reduced by 15-18% and that of the fronts by 30% or more;
  • Unbalanced front/rear wheel alignment (the inside of the tire will wear out faster);
  • Bad roads – bulges and side cuts are formed;
  • Untimely seasonal tire change. Winter tires are much softer than summer models. At higher temperatures, the wear increases several times;
  • Frequent and sudden braking and acceleration;
  • Improper storage conditions;
  • Aggressive steering;
  • Driving at top speeds;
  • Faulty suspension parts;
  • Heavy loads, etc.

What are the dangers of worn front tires?

  • Bad grip. If the tire is heavily worn, there is a real possibility to fly off the track.
  • Blowouts. The consequences may be fatal.
  • Poor vehicle handling and driving dynamics.
  • Increased fuel consumption.

The list goes on and on. Front tires must always be in excellent condition, monitored continuously, changed, or serviced if necessary.

How do I extend the life of my tires?

To make the whole kit serve longer, you need to follow some rules and make sure that each tire wears out evenly. It is not difficult to achieve the same wear on all four tires. All you have to do is change your rear and front tires every six months or 6,000-8,000 miles.

On average, the tires’ service life is 3-4 years. During this time, they can be rotated twice – this procedure will make the tires wear approximately the same.

Tire Rotation

There are quite a few tire rotation patterns designed for optimal wear. According to Jacob of  Tireget.com, the simplest and most common one implies that the rears are moved forward and rearranged – the left tire is mounted on the right side and the right tire is mounted on the left side of the front-wheel drive. You can also add newly purchased tires to the rotation process and significantly reduce the wear.

All modern cars have certain suspension settings, depending on which, tires may have barely noticeable wear on the inside/outside of the tread. To compensate for such wear, the tires should be repositioned from the right to the left side of the vehicle and vice versa.

However, purchasing a new tire does not always save the situation. Sometimes the rubber wear can indicate possible malfunctions of the car. In this case, replacing the tire with a new one may not help – some types of breakdowns make your new tires wear out prematurely in a short time.

Tips

  • To align the wheels properly, you should adjust vehicle suspension components.
  • Checking your tire pressure once a month will allow you to notice a puncture or other tire damage in time plus, you will save money on fuel consumption, which increases if the pressure does not match the recommended value. Tire pressure can vary significantly during cold weather and with sudden temperature changes, so make sure everything is under control.
  • Regularly check your wear indicator or use any coin to measure the tread height. In the event of excessive tire wear, be sure to replace the tires with new ones, as tires with excessive wear may lead to an accident. Typically, tires should be replaced after the tread height is lower than recommended by the manufacturer. Some tire manufacturers put wear indicators on their tires (between the tread). As soon as the tread wears to the indicator height, it is time to replace the tires with new ones.
  • Remember to check your vehicle’s technical condition. By checking your car regularly and changing the consumables during the check, you make the basis for a long, impeccable service that will save you from costly repairs in the long run.
  • If you find any dents on the tire, have your vehicle’s suspension and racks fully diagnosed at an auto repair shop.
  • If you notice a crack or bulges on your tires, you should buy new tires as soon as possible.
  • Make sure your anti-lock braking system is in perfect condition.
  • Check the ball joints and wheel bearing.

FAQ

Which tires wear faster on a truck?

Depending on your driving style (steering, turning, acceleration, braking, etc.), FWD/RWD truck type, load weight, and tire tread depth, typically, the fronts will wear out faster. This mostly due to the massive engine (especially in diesel trucks) which is located in the front. Unless you throw smoke shows regularly, your front wheels are usually the first to wear out. If you leave rubber trails behind you, then it’s the rears. If you drive an RWD, it’s best to put new tires on the rear since you are less likely to have a blowout, provided they have an adequate thread thickness. RWD trucks often will have the rears worn out just as fast as the fronts, or even faster.

Is it OK to replace two tires at a time?

It’s best that you change your car tires in pairs unless the tire is relatively new (<10.000 miles). Replacing only one tire may change the handling characteristics of the car. However, for all-wheel-drive systems, it’s best to replace all four tires if the tread on the old tires is significantly worn. If you replace only two tires, make sure you put them on the rears and move the old ones to the front – this will help maintain the control on wet roads and resist hydroplaning.

Which tires wear more front or back?

Depending on what you drive, in most cases, it’s the fronts. FWD vehicles’ front tires are responsible for the acceleration, steering, and most of the braking events, so it’s normal for them to wear out faster than the rear ones.

What causes tires to wear out fast?

Weak/excessive air pressure (under-inflated tires often wear out on the edges, over-inflated tires wear out down the middle of the thread), delayed tire rotation (if you don’t rotate your tires when you are supposed to, two of your tires will wear out faster), faulty suspension parts; unbalanced wheel alignment (the inside of the tire will wear out fast), aggressive steering, driving at top speeds, heavy loads, etc.

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