Proper tire rotation on a vehicle is a simple, yet effective way to prolong the life of your tires. Whether you’re a DIYer with a jack and an air gun, or you prefer to let a trained tire technician handle your vehicle maintenance, it’s important to remember to schedule this task frequently.
How often you rotate your tires will depend on several factors:
- The amount of mileage you rack up on the odometer in a year
- The type of tires you have mounted on your vehicle
- Your driving habits
- The mechanical condition of your vehicle
How Often Is Enough?
Most drivers should rotate their tires approximately every 8-12,000 kilometres. A common rule of thumb is to do it every other oil change.
Otherwise, in parts of Canada where drivers ride on winter tires for half of the year, the spring and fall tire changeover periods are an ideal time for a tire rotation. This is also a good time to give your tires a thorough inspection to check for:
- Uneven wear
- Proper tire inflation
If you pile up the kilometres in your vehicle each year (more than 20,000), it’s advisable to add in an extra tire rotation. In addition to spring and fall, you could rotate your tires sometime in the summer.
Maintaining a Valid Tire Warranty
Some tire manufacturers require rotations to be carried out at specific intervals in order for their tire warranties to remain valid.
If you notice your vehicle is starting to make unusual noises or vibrations, it’s a good idea to get it checked out. While uneven tread wear might be a contributing factor, there could be other issues affecting your vehicle, such as:
- Worn-out suspension
- Improper wheel alignment
- Over/under inflation
- Other mechanical issues
Why is Tire Rotation Important?
Aside from prolonging the life of your tires, rotating them at frequent intervals offers several key advantages:
- Improves performance and handling
- Increases vehicle safety
- Promotes even treadwear
- Reduces the potential for tire failure
In most modern passenger vehicles—especially ones with front- and all-wheel drive—the front tires tend to wear down faster than the ones on the rear. This is due to a combination of factors, including:
- Increased force on tires from the drivetrain
- More weight in the front of the vehicle (engine and passengers)
- Braking and cornering transfers more pressure to the front tires
By rotating your tires, you’ll help ensure the tread wear is balanced among all four tires.
For more on this, check out our post: Why Rotate Tires?
To ensure your tires are roadworthy, visit your local Kal Tire store for a free inspection.