Have you ever looked at your car’s tires and realized that they were worn and cracking? This phenomenon is called tire dry rot, and when left untreated, it can create driving dangers. Below, you’ll learn about a few of the common reasons why tires crack.
As a tire ages, it naturally begins to wear out. Even if you drive your car lightly enough that your tires still have good treads, you will need to replace them every 5 to 10 years due to the cracking caused by oxidation. If caught early, you can expand the lifespan of a cracking tire with anti-aging chemicals or sealant, but most professionals recommend replacing your tires every six years or when they begin to show signs of cracking.
Certain chemicals can be corrosive to tires and cause cracking. Tire cleaning products, industrial cleaning solutions, motor oil, and other chemicals from your home or garage can all damage tires. To prevent premature cracking, be mindful of the products with which your tires come in contact.
When exposed to sunlight (especially direct sunlight) for long periods of time, tires can begin to crack. This is because the ultraviolet rays in sunlight dry out and break down the components of the rubber. In addition, the ozone that is in the atmosphere and produced by electric motors can break down rubber tires over time.
Another cause of tire cracking is exposure to extreme heat or cold. Long, cold winters can cause tires to become brittle and crack, so be on the lookout for cracking, especially in cooler weather.
Incorrect use of your tires, including regularly driving on underinflated tires, will cause them to crack. Driving on underinflated tires contorts your tires and puts more stress on them than if they were inflated. Additionally, driving on cracked, underinflated tires is a serious safety hazard, as the combination can lead to further loss of air, a puncture, or a blowout. To extend the life of your tires and keep them from cracking, it’s important to check your tire pressure regularly.
If any of these common reasons why tires crack has caused damage to your tires, be sure to repair or replace them as soon as possible. Driving on cracked tires can lead to dangerous situations while driving. With proper care, you can prevent dry rot on your tires, and you’ll be all the safer on the road for it.