Proper Maintenance Helps Extend Vehicle Life!
- Change your engine oil every 3 months or 3,000 miles
- Check your tire inflation pressure monthly
- Rotate your tires every 6 months or 5,000 to 8,000 miles
- Change the engine air filter annually or when visibly restricted.
- Inspect Brake System every 12 months or 15,000 miles
ARTICLES ON VEHICLE MAINTENANCE
When replacing tires, MAP and vehicle manufacturers suggest that the replacement
tires match or exceed the OEM speed and load rating designation. If tires of different
speed rating designations are mixed on the same vehicle, the tires may vary in handling
characteristics. Do not mix different speed rating designations on the same axle.
It is particularly important to match all tire sizes and constructions on 4-wheel
(4x4) and all-wheel (AWD) drive vehicles unless otherwise specified by vehicle manufacturer.
Ideally, all four tires should be replaced at the same time. Some vehicle manufacturers
restrict replacement of tires to specific brands, types, or sizes.
When replacing fewer than ALL 4 tires on a vehicle, follow the vehicle manufacturer’s
recommendations as to the placement of the new tires. If it is not possible to follow
the vehicle manufacturer’s tire replacement recommendations, remember to replace
tires on the same axle with the same size, construction, speed rating, and, if possible,
similar tread pattern and put the two new tires on the rear.
Things to watch for
- Do not mix size or type (all season, performance, mud and snow) of tires on the
- When replacing only two tires on front or rear drive vehicles, it is preferable
to place the two new tires on the rear
- If radial tires and nonradial tires are mixed on the same vehicle, the radials must
be on the rear
- Mount tires only on same or approved rim widths
- Proper wheel alignment adjusts the angle of the wheels so they are positioned correctly
relative to the vehicle’s frame and maximizes the life of your tires
Why Rotate the Tires?
The front tires on most vehicles tend to wear out faster than the rear tires. This
is due to the effects of steering the vehicle and the weight transfer that occurs
during braking. To ensure that all four tires wear evenly, it is important to rotate
them on a regular basis. Tire rotation helps maintain balanced handling because
it allows all four tires to wear at the same rate. Keep in mind, as tire wear reduces
tread depth, it increases the tires’ response to driver inputs. Consequently, by
equalizing tire wear at all four corners, dry road performance is actually enhanced.
Another advantage of regular rotation is that it allows the tires to be replaced
in complete sets rather than in pairs. This maintains handling continuity. It also
enables drivers to take advantage of the latest in tire technology, instead of trying
to match a pair of older tires.
How often should they be rotated?
Most manufacturers list rotation intervals in the scheduled maintenance section
of the vehicle service manual and/or the owner’s manual. Tire rotation patterns
can also be found there. If this information is unavailable for a particular vehicle,
rotate the tires every 6 months or 7,500 miles following the appropriate rotation
sequence shown in the illustrations. After completing a tire rotation, be sure to
reset inflation pressures to the manufacturer’s recommended specifications indicated
on the vehicle tire placard.
It may also be necessary to reset the Tire Pressure Monitoring System on some newer
vehicles. Tire rotation will not correct irregular wear, wheel alignment or worn
suspension components. If these conditions exist, an inspection should be performed
to identify the repairs necessary to correct the problem.
Vehicle Tire Placard.
Since 1968, cars and light trucks sold in the United States have been required to
have a tire information sticker, called a vehicle tire placard. The vehicle tire
placard indicates the size of the original equipment tires (including the spare),
cold inflation pressure for the tires on both axles as well as the spare, and load
index or range. Depending on the vehicle, the vehicle tire placard will either be
located on the edge of any door, the doorpost, glove box, fuel door or inside trunk
If the tire placard is missing, consult the owner’s manual, vehicle manufacturer,
or tire manufacturer regarding applicable tire information. Always refer to the
vehicle manufacturer's recommendations before replacing tires.
Sample Vehicle Placard.
Click on the image to enlarge
Tires should always be replaced with the same size designation, or approved options,
as recommended. Never choose a smaller size with less load carrying capacity than
the size on the tire placard.
NOTE: It is not always possible to select a replacement tire with exactly the same
size as shown on the placard. Consult with a vehicle or tire manufacturer for replacement
recommendations. (Some vehicle manufacturers require differentsized tires for either
the front or rear axles.)
AMRA/MAP believes that this information is accurate and reliable and does not endorse,
approve or certify such information, nor does it guarantee the accuracy, completeness,
efficacy, or timeliness; reliance on it should only be undertaken after a detailed
review of the applicable OE publication(s). AMRA/MAP is not responsible for, and
expressly disclaims all liability for damages of any kind or consequences thereof,
arising out of use, reference to, reliance on, or performance of such information.