Road Ready

Q: In the past three years, I’ve gotten three flat tires. How can I find out what tire brands are best for my car and what can I do to make the tires last longer?
– via the Internet

A: Flat tires are usually a result of punctures and, according to Dan Zielinski, vice president of communications for the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA) in Washington, D.C., there really isn’t one tire that is more puncture-resistant than another. He does, however, offer advice on what consumers need to know about their tires to ensure the best driving performance.

  • Check tire size: “If you own a used car, you can not trust that the previous owner put the right size tires on your car.” He suggests that you consult the tire information sticker usually located on the inside of the driver’s door post. “There you will find information on the tire size, the load rating, and speed rating. Make sure the tire has at least the same rating for what’s recommended or higher, but never lower.”
  • Check tire pressure: “The number on the tire wall is the maximum inflation pressure for the tire — not what’s recommended for your vehicle. That information is also found on the tire information sheet for your car. The car manufacturer sets the pressure requirements for each car.”
  • Rotate every 6,000 to 8,000 miles: “It promotes even tire wear, so they’ll last longer. If you never rotate your tires, they will wear unevenly, which will shorten the life of your tires.”
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Check out www.discounttiredirect.com and www.tirerack.com for purchasing tires on line. The RMA’s Website (www.rma.org) also offers safety tips.

 

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