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Care of Tires

Your entire ride rests on a few square inches of your tires touching the road. I hope you are taking good care of them!

You spend thousands of dollars on your car. And when it all comes down to it, your entire ride rests on a few square inches of your tires touching the road. You can't accelerate without your tires, you can't turn, you can't stop ... I hope you are taking good care of them!

Of course you know the 4 basics of tire care:

proper air pressure; proper alignment; rotate; inspect for tread wear.
All four are more important than cleaning and dressing your tires. Cleaning and dressing your tires is the "fifth basic" of tire care. Cleaning and dressing tires will make them last longer, and will even improve traction! And to top it off, clean dressed tires and wheels really set off a nicely washed car.

UV (ultraviolet) light, ozone, brake dust, and water -

these are the substances that will cause the rubber in your tires to dry out, discolor (grey), crack, split, and wear prematurely. Some people call it "dry rot." That is what you are fighting against.

Tire manufacturers add two substances to tires to protect them from UV light and ozone -- wax and 'carbon black'.

Carbon black performs many funtions in your tires, but it all boils down to 2 things:
- dramatically increases durability - carbon black is what allows your tires to last 50,000 miles instead of only 5,000! (That is why tires are black!)
- protects the rubber polymers from UV light by sacrificing itself.

Wax is added to tires to protect the rubber from ozone. Without the protection of wax, ozone will dry and crack your tires.

The purpose of tire dressing is to help protect the carbon black and the wax in your tires ... and, of course, to make your tires shine like new.

Which tire dressing should you use?

The 3 features you want in a tire dressing are:
  • provides the look you like (glossy, wet, dry, shiny...)
  • has UV stabilizers in it to help protect the carbon black in your tires.
  • creates a physical barrier between the air/ozone and the wax in your tires.
More Shine Less Time I do have a personal favorite tire dressing -- hands down, I like Stoner "More Shine Less Time." It is fast, easy, long lasting, and works great! Of all the products I use and recommend, this one is near the top of this list. Buy it at amazon.com.

Tire dressings should be applied to clean, dry tires. Regular soaps and detergents can remove some of the protecting waxes from your tires along with the dirt. That is not a good thing! A better solution is to use the tire cleaner cycle at the Kutztown Car Wash. Self Service Car Wash tire cleaner's are specially formulated to gently lift the dirt and grime off your tires without stripping its natural protection.

Thanks for reading, I hope this article was useful to you!
...Paul

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