25 Jan Truck Tire Maintenance Tips That Help You Save On the Fuel Cost
Most truck owners state that the main maintenance costs in the truck business are employee costs, fuel costs and tire cost with tire maintenance and replacement being the leading cost among the three. Tire maintenance also is the leading influence on fuel consumption of your truck contributing to about a third effect on the consumption. It is therefore important for the truck owner to establish the factors that affect the wear and tear of tires to effectively save on maintenance costs of the truck and realize more profits for the business.
Always inflate your tires to the recommended pressure levels that commensurate the amount of load on board. When inflating the tires, the recommended pressure should base on the load per tire. The load per tire determines tire contact patch with the road surface and the tire wear. The more or less contact the tire makes with the road surface leads to heat build-up due to friction, which affects the tire life. Therefore, you should ensure not to over-inflate or under-inflate the tires to avoid affecting the tire life that will lead to premature tire removal, an increase in the fuel consumption and tire rolling resistance. Ensure to inflate the tires as per the load carried to increase the tire life.
Loads and Loading practices
The total load on board should not exceed the vehicle passing weight, which may cause overload on the axle that overloads the tires. The tire overload together with high speed, long distance causes tires to wear fast leading to premature removal. It is important to arrange the load in the recommended positions on the truck to avoid causing irreversible wearing on the tires. Always ensure the load is centered or more towards the front of the truck to prevent damaging your tires.
Driving at extremely high speeds increases the tire temperature due to friction, which reduces the tire’s modulus. Rubber, which is a non-conductor of heat, is the main material for making tires. Therefore, there is lack of temperature distribution in the tire that causes separation of tire elements that causes increased wear of the tires leading to premature replacement.
Wheel Balancing and Alignment
An improper balance wheel causes extreme vibrations that affect the steering control. Ensure to balance your wheels properly by positioning loads on the tires that will counterbalance some heavyweight spots on the tire assembly. Properly balanced wheels guarantee you long tire life as well as a comfortable ride. Also, ensure proper alignment for your truck, which involves setting the truck’s suspension components and the steering in such a way that they are running straight and true and as per the manufacturer’s instructions. Alignments enable you to have control of your truck on the road, have a uniform, and even wear of the tires as well as for safety. Always check the truck’s alignment as soon as you notice ununiformed tire wear and vehicle vibration and pulling to one side of the road.