Tire problems are one of the most common issues that truck drivers face. To operate a semi safely, it’s crucial you perform routine inspections of all 18 tires. Failing to do so increases the risk of a flat tire or blowout, not to mention hours of downtime and hundreds or even thousands of dollars in repairs.
Though there’s no way to prevent tire problems entirely, there are a number of preventive measures you can take. Whether you’ve been driving for one year or 50, we hope you’ll take a few minutes to refresh.
1.) Rotate your tires. Most mechanics recommend you rotate the tires on your semi every 6,000-8,000 miles. If you regularly transport oversize loads, more frequent rotations may be necessary. Rotating your tires is one of the easiest ways to extend the life of your tires. Plus, they’ll experience less wear. That means a reduced risk of hydroplaning or poor traction in snow or ice.
2.) Check the tire pressure. No two truck tires are exactly alike. Each comes with its own recommended pressure. If you’re unsure of the recommended PSI, refer to your user manual or get in touch with the manufacturer. When the tires on your truck are properly filled they last longer and improve your fuel economy.
3.) Get your wheels aligned. The alignment of your wheels is another factor that affects the lifespan of your tires. Typically, it’s recommended you invest in a wheel alignment every two or three years, but it doesn’t hurt to have it done each time you have the oil changed. When your tires are in alignment, your truck is better able to distribute the weight of a load. That helps even the wear on your treads and improves your truck’s fuel efficiency.
4.) Drive defensively. Driving defensively doesn’t just keep you and others on the road safe, it extends the life of your tires. When you adhere to the posted speed limit and accelerate slowly after stops, your tires don’t experience as much wear and tear. That same rule applies when you take mountain grades slowly (instead of riding the breaks). The same benefits apply in inclement weather. Driving carefully on ice or snow can significantly reduce the risk of you jack-knifing or running off the road.
By following these four simple tips, you can keep the wheels on your semi in optimal shape for years to come. Here at Double D Distribution, we take preventive maintenance seriously. All of the trucks in our fleet are regularly inspected and cared for, ensuring our drivers make it to and from their destinations safely. To learn more about what sets our business apart, please visit our website by clicking here.