Caring for Your Tires

caring for your tiresCaring for your tires is one of the easiest vehicle maintenance you can do. Some of the tasks associated with caring for our tires you can take care of yourself, and the rest it a matter of putting it on your calendar and paying attention to cues that something may be amiss. 

  1. It pays to be vigilant. Pay attention to where you drive. Debris on the road, off road, recent construction area, potholes, speed bumps, etc. Rough terrain can take a toll on your tires and alignment. Slow down or take alternative routes. 
  2. Tire pressure matters. Monitor your tire pressure and make sure your tires are properly inflated, otherwise you’ll premature wear and poor gas mileage.
  3. Frigid temps effect pressure. Most newer vehicles will alert you to a change in tire pressure due to TPMS (sensors), however, pay attention. Tire pressure often drops in tires when temps drop. Add air as soon as possible.
  4. Shaking isn’t good. If you notice shaking or vibrating, have your tires/wheel balance checked. Plan to have this regularly checked. If all is good, you’re good to go!
  5. Rotate your tires consistently. Rotate your tires according to your manual or at the advice of your tire technician/mechanic. Most vehicles recommend between 5,000 and 8,000 miles. This will help your tires wear more evenly, perform better, and last longer. 
  6. Check alignment.  Wheel alignment is also called tire alignment and front-end alignment. It doesn’t need to be checked as frequently as your tire/wheel balancing, but if you notice any pulling, vibrating, or mis-match with your steering wheel vs direction of your car, you should have this checked immediately.
  7. Take a quick peek. Get in the habit of looking at your tires. A quick visual check will help you identify tread, uneven wear, low pressure, or debris in the tire that can help you get ahead of problems and better care for your tires.

If you have any concerns or questions about your tires, we’re here to help. Stop by either of our locations in Bloomington or Anoka. We’re open 6 days a week and no appointments are necessary.

 

Happy St. Patrick’s Day

It’s St. Patrick’s Day, and we think we have ALL THE LUCK with so many wonderful customers like you. Thank you for your business, and Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

TireZoo

Ready, Set, Rotate Your Tires

rotate your tires and tire rotation informationDid you know? Front tires wear faster on front-wheel drive vehicles

On front-wheel drive cars, it is especially important to rotate your tires periodically because the front tires wear faster than the rear tires. Uneven tire tread thickness, front to rear, will give you uneven braking and poor handling, especially in the rain. If you don’t rotate the tires, you’ll end up replacing them two at the time, which means you’ll always have uneven tread thickness. Replacing tires in a matched set of four will keep the handling and braking traction of the car balanced.

Are you hearing a hum?

On some vehicles, you may experience additional problems if you do not rotate the tires as needed. You might hear tire noise when driving on smooth roads or what some people describe as a humming sound. If you detect a humming noise, check the rear tires right away. You are looking for a “saw-tooth” type wear pattern on the outside and inside of the tire. If you run your hand back and forth along the edges of the tire tread, you’ll be able to tell. It is important to be careful when running your hands over your tires so that you don’t cut yourself on debris or exposed steel belt wire. If your tire feels smooth in only one direction,  you may have found some of your noise. This condition can happen on some front wheel drive vehicles that have tires with tread blocks on the shoulder of the tire.  You will want to rotate this tire to the other side of the car  right away, which should even out this type of wear and tone down the humming for a quieter ride.

Most front-wheel drive vehicles follow this tire rotation pattern

You can rotate tires on your own, although most people find it time consuming and labor intensive. Check your owner’s manual for the proper rotation method for your vehicle. Most front wheel drive cars require the above rotation method. 

If your tires are directional, you will need to rotate only front to rear. If you have a sports car or a European vehicle it is not recommended that you rotate your own tires, unless you are familiar with that vehicle’s rotation patterns. Many of these vehicles have tires that are staggered fitment (tires on the front are different size than rear).

If you have questions about tires, stop by and see us! We’re your tire experts and we are here to help.

What to Do When You Get a Flat Tire

a flat tire in the winterA flat tire is something that everyone will likely encounter at some point. Even those who take great care of their tires and inspect them frequently can run into debris on the road that can cause a fast or slow flat tire.

While Parked

If a flat tire happens in your garage, driveway, or while parked somewhere, you will likely have plenty of time to think and plan out your next step. It’s more critical that you know what you’ll do if you get a flat tire with traveling.

on the Road

The most important thing to remember when you have a flat tire while driving is to be safe. Don’t keep driving on a flat tire, but make sure you pull off into the safest area possible. If you are on a busy roadway, be mindful of traffic and assume they won’t see you or slow down. It’s better to take the initiative to keep yourself, your passengers, and your vehicle as safe as possible. While it’s not advised to drive very far on a flat tire, you can drive slowly on it for a small distance; enough to get out of harm’s way.

Turn on your hazard lights immediately. If it is safe for you to get out of the vehicle, place reflective triangles behind your vehicle before taking a look at your tire. You have some in your trunk, right? Next, decide if your situation warrants a 911 call, or a call to a tow service, or if you can safely change tires and put a spare on your vehicle.

Worry about your flat tire and if it can be fixed later. Once you are safe, you can print our coupon for a free flat tire fix (up to $15) and come to either TireZoo location so we can help you out.

Slippery Roads Safety

slippery road safety with good tires from TireZooIf you feel you’re slipping and sliding all over the road, and there’s barely any snow on the ground, it could be your tires. Winter driving is certainly a challenge, but it doesn’t need to be harder and more risky with poor tires.

People often make the mistake of not checking the tread, pressure, and condition of their tires. They “look” nice, or in their head they do a mental tally of when they bought the tires, instead of calculated how many miles are actually on the tires or how old the tires are.

Slippery Roads Safety

The Minnesota Department of Transportation does a great job of plowing and removing snow, as well as sanding and salting roads. Here is more information about Minnesota roads, safety, and snowplowing.

Drivers can get up-to-date road conditions from Minnesota Traveler Map 24/7.

You need to check your tires and help keep yourself and others safe on the winter roads. Proper tread and condition of your tires will effect how your vehicle handles on slippery roads. Tires can’t always stop you from sliding, but they can significantly improve vehicle response.

So if you’re sliding through intersections, get your tires checked. You can stop by either of the TireZoo locations in Anoka or Bloomington, MN and we’ll help you check your tires and replace any that need replacing.

Replacing Tires on a Leased Car

Replacing Tires on a Leased CarThere are quite a few things you should check or replace prior to the end of your lease. Replacing tires on a leased car is something you may need to do, and it’s something we can help you do without spending a small fortune.

Be sure to check:

  • Tread depth
  • Condition of the tire; check for cuts, bulges, or anything that would indicate compromised safety and longevity
  • Double check that the tires on your vehicle match the manufacturer’s guidelines for your vehicle

If you need different tires, the TireZoo can help. We can replace one, two, three, or four tires with quality used tires that will pass inspection!

The tires on your lease return will pass inspection with our help.

Need more help prior to returning your leased car? Here is a good article to reference things you should consider. 

How to Donate a Car

How to Donate a CarMore people are considering donating a car, as the process becomes more clear and simple. There are advantages to donating a car such as not going through the sales process, helping others, and making a significant donation that is tax deductible. Many participating donation programs accept non-functioning vehicles as well, which can be a good option for those who don’t wish to spend more than the vehicle is worth to repair. Each person needs to decide if donating a car (or other vehicle) is the right choice for you. Once you’ve made the decision to donate a car, you can select an organization that can assist you with the process and keep it very simple and easy for you.

How to Donate a Car:

Maybe you’ve heard the radio ads for Kars for Kids? This organization is sponsored by Microsoft, Goldman Sachs and a variety of other well-known entities. KarsforKids.org has a simple online form process, will accept cars, boats, or Rv’s in any condition; working or not.

Vehicles for Veterans accepts donated vehicles and is a Minnesota program through the Disabled American Veterans of Minnesota.

Make-a-Wish of Minnesota has a special car donation program called Wheels for Wishes, and they too accept all donated vehicles regardless of how well they run.

You can also donate your car to Minnesota Public Radio.

 

Holiday Hours at TireZoo

The TireZoo in Anoka and Bloomington will be closed on Christmas Eve, Monday, December 24th and Christmas Day, Tuesday, December 25th. We will be open regular business hours on Wednesday, December 26th. 

The TireZoo will also be closed on New Year’s Day, Tuesday, January 1st. 

Traveling During Christmas

reduce stress while traveling during christmasIt’s hard to believe that Christmas rolls around so quick each year. Traveling during Christmas can be stressful, but the more you plan ahead, the easier it will be. We’ve compiled a list of items and tips that you can use to make travel more enjoyable around the holidays. Let us know what you’d add to this list!

“Less-stress” Checklist for Traveling During Christmas

  • Start your packing list early. Post it where others can add items you don’t want to forget.
  • When bringing medications, be sure to leave some at home. You’ll reduce your stress if you don’t have to worry about forgetting critical medications on your travels back home.
  • Many items that are purchased can be shipped directly to your destination. Have gifts and other items waiting for you when you arrive. Double check if the online store offers free wrapping, gift cards, and/or shipping too.
  • If your family truckster will be packed full and lacking space, plan to bring some items on other weekend visits or send with another vehicle headed the same direction, or ship for added space.
  • In the case of larger families or extended stays when more luggage is needed, consider a semi-permanent or removable luggage rack to give you more space. If you won’t get enough use to justify the purchase, see if you can borrow one from someone with a similar vehicle/set-up.
  • If kenneling your pets, call early to reserve space.
  • Swap car games and toys with friends for something new to entertain younger kids
  • Locate all necessary car chargers.
  • Schedule oil change and regular check-ups to ensure your vehicle is ready for winter travel.
  • Check your tire tread and tire pressure; if anything is questionable or you don’t know how, stop by either TireZoo location so we can help.
  • Program emergency numbers into your phone and/or download travel apps to help you with road conditions.
  • Save room for winter survival kit and blankets.
  • Shop when you get there. If you’re in charge of bringing the salad, why transport lettuce in a cooler? Shop for items when you arrive and assemble your part of the meal then.

Happy and safe travels!

Happy Thanksgiving!

From everyone at the TireZoo, we want to wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving!

We are closed at both locations today, Thursday, November 22nd. We will reopen on Friday, November 23rd at regular business hours. Enjoy today!

TireZoo