Tires are the single most important safety feature on your car. They are the only thing that connects the car to the road, and life-saving technologies like antilock brakes and electronic stability control cannot do their job if the tires don't have a good grip on the pavement.
As the adage goes, nothing lasts forever. Car owners still need to replace their tires a few times or more throughout the life of a typical vehicle. Despite advances in longer-lasting tires, actual tread life will vary by car type, tire type (such as all season or high performance), driving aggressiveness, and even road and weather conditions. Proper maintenance and responsible driving can maximize the mileage in a set of tires.
We offer these services to help you prolong the life of your tires.
Wheel alignment (or simply alignment) is standard car maintenance that adjusts the angles of the wheels to match the manufacturer's specifications. With proper wheel alignment, the vehicle's suspension and steering systems operate correctly, reducing tire wear.
Alignment is one of the more complex tire services that experienced mechanics should handle. At Forest Brook Automotive, our technicians use an alignment machine to adjust suspension angles that influence tire position and movement appropriately. We make changes while ensuring the steering wheel remains centered.
Balancing, like alignment, is essential for a smooth ride and longer tire life. You may not know this, but the size, shape, and weight of your car and truck tires aren't the same. To counteract these differences and ensure all four tires are equal, manufacturers put metal weights on them.
Over time, damage, imperfections or blemishes in a vehicle tire or rim will make one section of the tire heavier. The result? You'll feel a wobbling or jumping when driving your car or truck. You may hear the bouncing, sense it in the floorboard or your seat, or feel it as you grip the steering wheel. If you look at your tires and notice a cupped or scalloped wear pattern, it's time to take your vehicle in for an evaluation and, if needed, balancing service. In addition to balancing when you notice problems, the team at Forest Brook Automotive recommends wheel balancing with each tire rotation or repair.
If a tire goes flat because of a puncture, we can repair it if the hole is in the tire tread and less than ¼-inch in diameter. It's also possible to save a tire with multiple tread punctures if the holes are at least 16-inches apart. It's tempting to try a quick fix like a tire plug or sealant on your own. We recommend using these D.I.Y. solutions only as an aid to get you to a professional auto repair shop.
Although Forest Brook Automotive mechanics are highly skilled, they'll tell you it's time to replace a tire with a sidewall puncture, tread separation, or significant cuts. If the tires are repairable, our certified technicians will make sure repairs are correct and complete, getting you back on the road with peace of mind.
When you bring your vehicle to Forest Brook Automotive for routine maintenance like an oil change, we recommend a tire inspection (including the spare tire). Our team checks the tire tread and sidewalls for irregular wear, cuts, cracks, scrapes, bulges, and snags. We also look for evidence of any punctures from nails, rocks, or other foreign objects. Stones and glass can easily embed in tires without causing an immediate flat. We'll remove this debris to prevent further damage and confirm tire inflation (air pressure) meets manufacturer guidelines.
We'll talk to you after the inspection about any problem areas and how to resolve them. For example, low air pressure, too much weight in the vehicle, and even long-term parking can cause tires to wear faster. It's important to note that seasonal changes can affect tire pressure. Cold air is lighter, and you may see tire pressure drop when winter sets in. Be sure to stop by Forest Brook Automotive if you need help checking tire condition.
We recommend rotating your vehicle tires, shifting their positions to ensure even tire wear and extended tire life. Some tire mileage warranties require regular rotation to remain valid.
The technicians at Forest Brook Automotive use appropriate rotation patterns. Tires on the vehicle's front axle have a different function than rear wheels. For example, a front-wheel drive car or truck relies more heavily on front tires compared to a rear-wheel or all-wheel drive vehicle. Performance cars may experience more severe tire wear than a family S.U.V. Rotating the tires evens out any differences in wear. Your vehicle owner's manual will tell you how often to rotate your tires, but generally, plan on scheduling tire rotation after every 5,000 to 8,000 miles.
Once a need for new tires is determined, it is necessary to identify the best tires for your vehicle and driving demands. Look for tires that do well in tests for braking, handling, and resistance to hydroplaning. Winter traction should also be considered, if applicable. Let tread wear, ride comfort, noise, and rolling resistance be tiebreakers. Trust the tire experts at Forest Brook Automotive to help you choose the right tires for your vehicle.
We offer most major brands of tires. These are a few of our preferred brands.
Tires Questions and Answers
Q: Is it okay to mix tire brands on a car?A: Sometimes mixing brands and models on your car is unavoidable, but having a complete matching set is best. If possible, use the same tire on the front or rear wheels. While it's not usually advised, you can mix different tire brands on the same car, if you follow a few simple guidelines. Those include: never mix winter tires with all-season or summer tires; and to not mix run-flat tires with non-run-flat tires. For guidelines in the Lynchburg area, give us a call at 434-239-4561.
Q: What are the advantages to rotating my tires?A: Get your tires rotated and get an even amount of tread wear on your tires. Evenly worn tires contribute to a smooth and comfortable ride. Rotating your tires consistently can also extend the life of your tires. It can enhance safety by helping to prevent pulling and an uneven grip between the tire and the pavement.
Q: At what mileage interval should I rotate my tires?A: Experts recommend you rotate your tires every 5,000 to 7,500 miles. While this is a good rule of thumb, your vehicle's exact interval will depend on its drivetrain and your driving habits. More aggressive drivers in the Lynchburg area may need to rotate their tires more often. Our experts at Forest Brook Automotive can work with you to determine the tire rotation schedule that will work best.
Q: Does my tire warranty influence my rotation schedule?A: Tire manufacturers know that tire rotation is important for even tread wear. Tire mileage warranties are most often set by the manufacturers with tire rotations included. Failing to rotate your tires may void your tires manufacture warranty.
Q: How does snow tire usage influence rotation decisions?A: If you have snow tires check your tire pressure and rotate your winter tires on a regular schedule. Rotating snow and winter tires is important to maintaining even treadwear and preserving maximum traction in icy conditions.
Q: What throws tires out of balance?A: If you hit a curb or pothole your wheel-tire assembly can get out of balance. Everyday wear on tires and wheels can also cause an imbalance. Many experts recommended that you get your tires balanced every 5,000 to 7,500 miles or every 2 years. If you buy a new set of tires, you may find that tire balancing is included in your purchase. At Forest Brook Automotive, we can check your tire balance and make any necessary adjustments for you.
Q: How do you check tire pressure?A: First, remove the cap from the air valve on the tire and put it somewhere you won't lose it. Press the tire gauge against the open valve stem for a second or two. Next, read the air pressure gauge. Compare the number on the gage with the recommended tire pressure from your cars owner's manual or the sticker that should be next to the driver's side door opening. Finally, replace the tire's air valve cap.
Q: How do you check tire tread depth?A: Check all of your tires in multiple locations by inserting a penny into the tread groove on your tire with Lincoln's head facing toward you and the top of his head touching the tire. If you can see all of Lincoln's head, your tires are worn out and you need new tires. Of course, you can bring your vehicle to Forest Brook Automotive in Lynchburg and our experts can check it for you.
I want to thank you for getting me in and looking at my car. I came down on vacation and ended up with an oil leak. You took the time and helped me as much as you could. Just want you to know I made it home. Again thank you!!