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Common Causes of Tire Damage

Mercedes-Benz Maintenance Basics: Common Causes Of Tire Damage

There's a whole lot of sophisticated engineering and advanced technology to improve the drive inside your Mercedes-Benz -- but tires haven't changed all that much in a century. Sure, the rubber compounds are tougher and the treads are better at helping you grip the road in wet or icy conditions. However, they're still air-filled tires to help smooth out bumps in the road and provide the control you need no matter the conditions. These tires are susceptible to some dangers on the road! Find out more and learn how to keep your tires in good shape below.

Worn Tire Tread
Tire Blowout

5. Age & Sun Damage

Even if you don't drive your vehicle at all, the tires will still degrade slowly over time. Rubber degrades with age, and if you park your vehicle outside, the sun's UV rays can accelerate this process. If you've got a vehicle that doesn't get driven frequently, don't be surprised to find that the tires are crumbling or low on air after years of disuse. To keep your tires in the best shape, be sure to drive your vehicle regularly and store it out of the elements and away from direct sunlight when possible.

4. Incorrect Tire Pressure

The tire pressure recommended for your vehicle is designed to distribute wear across the whole surface of the tire. If your tires are too full or not full enough, the shape of the tire's contact patch won't be optimized. That means less of the tire tread is making contact with the road at any given time. As a result, what little of the tire is making contact with the road will wear out much, much faster. Have the tire pressure regularly adjusted on your car to make the tires perform best and last longer.

3. Poor Steering Alignment

Bad steering alignment will also cause your tires to wear out quickly. Properly aligned, all four wheels will be angled in the correct direction for smooth, straight ahead travel when the steering wheel is at dead center. If your vehicle has an alignment issue, the vehicle may pull to the left or right as you drive, or the steering wheel may not naturally return to center after making a turn. These symptoms indicate a bad alignment condition, which means your tires are working slightly against the direction your vehicle is traveling -- making them wear out much more rapidly.

Nails In Tire Illustration

2. Curbs & Potholes

Luckily, the pavement quality is relatively good here in Southern California -- but in colder climates where the freeze-thaw cycle is more active, pavement imperfections like cracks and potholes can pose a serious threat to your tires. Hitting a pothole hard enough could cause a blow-out, either by causing a rip or puncture in the tire itself, or simply by separating the tire from the wheel itself, letting all the air come out. Similarly, take care not to scrape your wheels against curbs! This can cause "curb rash" damage to the vehicle's wheels and tire sidewalls.

1. Road Debris

While you can often make a lane change to avoid a particularly nasty pothole, road debris like nails and screws, shards of glass, pieces of metal or wire are almost impossible to avoid behind the wheel. After all, you've got a lot more to pay attention to while driving than what's on the ground in your lane. Since you can't avoid these tire puncture risks, make sure your tires have the best chance to withstand them. Make sure you're using strong, high-quality tires rated for use on your vehicle. Make sure your tires are correctly inflated, so they have the greatest toughness against puncture. Finally, if you do suffer damage to your tire, head to Mercedes-Benz of Temecula for assistance. In many cases, we can patch small puncture wounds in tire treads so you don't have to pay for a new one.

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