Top tips for breaking in tyres
Posted by: Cal on 15/08/2013
What many people don't know is that just like your pair of favourite high heels, car tyres in fact need to be broken in to achieve their best performance and level of safety.
New tyres won't be completely seated in their wheel rims until they have some weight on them for a while, and as well as this there will be some remnants of release lubricant left from the tyre moulding process. The release lubricant takes a while to wear down, and while it's still there, it can lessen your tyres' traction on the road.
The usual approximation is that around 800km of driving will wear down the release fluid completely - and that's a fair distance! That doesn't mean you need to head out on a long drive across the country just because you've got some new tyres.
Being aware of the fact that your tyres' traction isn't at its peak is one of the most important things to keep in mind - and that awareness alone is likely to alter your driving habits to a greater level of safety. So long as you drive carefully and are sure in reasonable conditions, your tyres will naturally get rid of the lubricant - all in good time.
There are a few things to remember however. For instance during this initial period you'll need to be careful with the kind of terrain you're driving on. Avoid dirt roads and potholes until your tyres are fully settled, as this can damage or disturb your tyres and wheels and debris can even get caught up between the tyre and rim which is far from ideal.
It's also good to avoid automatic car washes, as these can pull tyres that are not completely seated and settled from the rims which can create more unwanted problems for you and your vehicle.
In addition to this remember to speed up and brake as gently as possible, so as not to stress your new tyres out with excess pressure during this initial stage. Speeding is never a good idea, but it's an especially poor one when you're driving with new tyres before they have settled and when you have not yet mastered their handling.
Armed with these tips, you'll make an extra safe and effective driver fitted out with new tyres - so let the good times roll.