When it comes to safety features on an automotive vehicle, a lot of people overlook tires. Let’s face it, tires can seem pretty boring to the average driver. Most of them wouldn’t even notice their tires until a flat happens!
But in reality, tires are an extremely important component of your vehicle, and not just for safety. After all, they’re a car’s sole point of connection to the road.
Taking care of your tires translates into a safer, more stable, and more fun ride. Not to mention, tires are expensive, so you want to keep your investment alive for as long as possible.
One of the simplest things you can do in this department is to maintain periodic tire rotation.
It’s very frustrating when you have to replace tires that are worn out on one side only. To avoid such a scenario, this article answers the question: how many miles for a tire rotation?
Keep reading to learn more about this process, why you should do it, and when.
The Short Answer
The general guidelines on the number of miles for a tire rotation are every 3,000 miles to 8,000 miles, or at least every 6 months. If you can’t keep track of your vehicle’s mileage or you tend to forget schedules, the rule of thumb goes as follows:
If one side of the tires looks more worn than the other, this is probably a sign that you need to shift your tires around to a different position on the wheel.
How Many Miles for a Tire Rotation?
Generally speaking, you should rotate your tires every 3,000 miles to 8,000 miles, or at least every 6 months. What you may not know is that this mileage range can vary depending on several factors including the frequency of driving, where you’re driving, and whether your vehicle is front-, rear-, or all-wheel drive.
Said wheels will work more on the road and so, they often have a faster rate of wear. How to rotate tires on front wheel drive? In particular, front-wheel-drive cars put a lot of their workload on the tires at the front, forcing them to take much harder hits than the tires in the rear.
The front tires endure most, if not all, of the force of accelerating, turning, and braking. Similarly, front-engine front-wheel cars also dump most of the vehicle’s weight on the front side, which increases the load on said tires.
Still, it’s not exactly a breeze if you drive another type-drive vehicle. The tires on any car will get damaged and worn over time due to the characteristics of different models’ alignment or suspension.
This is where periodic tire rotation comes in. As a rule of thumb, if one side of the tires looks more worn than the other, take that as a sign that you need to change the position of the tires on your car.
Why Rotate Your Tires Periodically?
Periodic tire rotation helps prevent flat tires on the road by making sure that no two tires are enduring a disproportionate amount of wear and tear. It also gives you a chance to inspect your tires, locate any damage, and even inflate them.
Additionally, tire rotation can result in less noise on the road, better traction on slippery surfaces, and less stress on the drivetrain.
How often do you rotate your tires? As we have mentioned in every 6 month.
How to Rotate Tires
The following is how you can rotate the tires on your vehicle, as well as what to consider before attempting to do it.
Before all else, you need to make sure whether or not you can even rotate your vehicle’s tires. At first you may ask: how long does it take to rotate tires? it depends. Professionals need 15 minutes only to rotate a tire. Find our guide – Cost To Have Tires Rotated.
Rotating tires involves changing the locations of wheels — that’s simply not possible on all cars.
Sometimes vehicles are fitted with directional tires featuring tread patterns that are meant to be used in one direction only, often indicated by an arrow on the sidewall or by a V-shaped tread pattern.
You can easily move these tires yourself from front to rear and vice-versa, but you can’t switch them from one side to another without having the tire dismounted from the wheel. If you do, you’ll be putting the tread pattern in an improper direction.
Another point to keep in mind is wheel size, more specifically, the wheel’s offset measurement. That’s the distance between the centerline of the wheel and the mounting hub.
Some cars are equipped with tires of the same size on all corners, but with slightly different offsets. In this case, you can change wheels from one side to the other unless they’re directional. Still, you’ll have to remove tires to switch them from front to rear.
- For front-drive vehicles: switch the back tires with the front ones on the same side, then put the back tires at the opposite front corners respectively.
- For rear-drive vehicles: switch the front tires with the back ones on the same side, then put the front tires at the opposite back corners respectively.
- For all-wheel-drive vehicles: you’ll switch all four tires in a scissor-like configuration where the right front goes to the left rear and vice-versa, and the left front goes to the right back and vice-versa.
So how many miles for a tire rotation? Generally, you’ll want to change the position of your tires when the distance you drive ranges between 3,000 miles to 8,000 miles.
The exact number of miles will vary according to the type of roads you’re driving on, the type of your car’s drive, and the frequency of driving.
Also, you can check how worn out the tires are by eye. If one side of the tires looks more worn than the other, take that as a sign that a tire rotation is due.
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