Tire Replacement on AWD Vehicles
The condition of your tires is critical to the safety of your vehicle. At some point over the course of car ownership, your tires start to lose their traction and braking ability. Tires become unsafe and need to be replaced when the tread is worn down to 1/16 of an inch. It is recommended that you replace all four tires on your vehicle at the same time, but especially on AWD vehicles. All four tires should be the same size, construction, and tread design and depth, to prevent differences in the outside diameter of each tire. Slight variations can cause drivability or even mechanical problems.
AWD is a popular feature among vehicles today. It is especially useful on wet or slippery roads and on loose surfaces like sand and dirt. In an AWD vehicle, the driveline is designed so that the tires work in unison. They are also equipped with additional differentials or viscous couplings that are designed to allow brief differences in wheel speeds when necessary. If the tires are mismatched, the differentials or viscous couplings may be forced to work all the time, resulting in excessive tire wear. Even tread wear is important to keep your AWD system operating at its best.
What happens if you have only partially worn tires and one needs to be replaced because of damage? Do you still have to pay for a new full set of tires? Always check with your AAA Car Care service consultant for the recommended replacement options. It is always best to replace tires as a set, or in pairs. If you are replacing two tires, remember that the recommended position for them is on the rear of the vehicle.
By replacing all four tires at the same time, you will get the safe performance that your vehicle was designed to have and could possibly reduce strain on your vehicle's driveline. You can purchase a new set of tires at the AAA Online Tire Store. With free shipping on every purchase and a wide selection of the top brands, AAA Tire Store offers members discounted rates and money saving offers from AAA Car Care. Rotate your tires and keep them properly inflated as recommended in your owner's manual, to maintain equal treadwear and minimize potential driveline issues.
To learn more about caring for your tires and additional safety tips, visit AAA Talks for Tires 101. To make sure your tires are in optimal condition, bring your vehicle into AAA Car Care Center for an inspection. If needed, our certified technicians can help you choose the right tires for your vehicle and install them. Click below to find your nearest AAA Car Care Center and make an appointment for a free inspection.