Automotive Tips from Jones Automotive: Where Should New Tires Be Placed
Posted January 06, 2019 10:10 AM
When Belton drivers need to replace tires, they need to know how many they should get and on which axle they should be placed. Replacing a damaged tire may leave you with three others with significant wear, which could affect your traction control, stability control and anti-lock brake systems.
If you can’t afford to replace all four tires at once, you should at least replace two on the same axle. New tires should always be put on the rear axle for stability in slippery conditions. Your friendly and professional Jones Automotive tire professional can help you know when your worn tires should be replaced, if you can have a damaged tire repaired as well as selecting the right tires for your needs.
Give us a call.
103 N Main Street
Belton, Texas 76513
Keep Your Tires Well Rounded in Belton: Tire Rotation and Wheel Balancing at Jones Automotive
Posted November 04, 2018 07:48 AM
Taking care of our tires is part of vehicle care for Belton drivers. We know they have to be replaced when they wear out, but tires also require some preventive maintenance. This maintenance will improve and extend the life of the tires, so it's well worth the effort and expense for Belton drivers to get it done. Tire maintenance includes keeping tires properly inflated, rotating tires and balancing wheels.
The recommended tire pressure for a vehicle's tires is printed on a sticker on the inside of the driver's side doorjamb. A lot of engineering goes into calculating the correct pressure, so it's an important number for Belton vehicle owners to know. Not following this recommendation can throw off the suspension system and can lead to tire damage. Underinflated tires wear out more quickly than properly inflated tires. Vehicles also get better traction and handling on properly inflated tires. Check your tire pressure at least once a week and add air if necessary.
Don't be tempted to add a bit of extra air to your tires when you fill them. Overinflated tires will cause the center tread to wear unevenly because of improper contact with the road. It will also affect the handling performance of your vehicle.
Rotating tires allows all four tires on a vehicle to wear evenly. Front tires get more wear than rear tires because they do most of the work on turns. Tire rotation allows all of the tires to spend time on the front of the car so they all experience the extra wear.
For most vehicles, tire rotation is simply a matter of moving the front tires to the rear and vice versa. Some vehicles, however, recommend a cross-rotational pattern. Other vehicles use asymmetrical tires, which means the right tires have to stay on the right side of the vehicle and the left tires on the left. Some vehicles use differently sized wheels on the front and back of the car and should not have their tires rotated.
What kind of rotation do you need? Check your owner's manual or talk to your service advisor at Jones Automotive. Your owner's manual will have information about how to rotate your vehicle's tires as well as letting you know how often you should get it done. For most vehicles, that's usually every 5,000 miles or 8,000 kilometers Your friendly and knowledgeable Jones Automotive professionals can also offer auto advice about tire rotation. A quick tire inspection can also indicate whether or not your tires are due to be rotated.
When it comes to tire maintenance for Belton drivers, wheel balancing is usually what we know least about. Balancing a wheel is necessary to keep it in constant contact with the road. If a tire is not balanced properly, it actually hops along the roadway. You can feel this hopping as a vibration in your steering wheel if the unbalanced tire is a front tire. You'll feel the vibration through your seat if a rear tire is unbalance. Properly balancing your tires is important and will extend their life span, improve handling and improve the safety of your vehicle. When you replace your tires, the new tires need to be balanced.
Never use different sized tires on the same axle of a vehicle. In other words, your front tires need to be the same size and your rear tires need to be the same size. Mixing sizes can lead to some serious handling problems for Belton drivers.
If you have an all-wheel drive or four-wheel drive vehicle, all four tires need to be the same size. If your tires are wearing out, you can sometimes make a new tire purchase fit within your budget by only buying two tires at a time. When you do this, the new tires should be installed on the rear of the vehicle. Rear tires are more in need of the traction than your front tires to avoid spinning out on slippery surfaces. If you drive a vehicle around Belton, you need tires, so you need to know how to care for them. The safety of your vehicle can depend on the condition of your tires.
The Jones Automotive Guide to Custom Wheels
Posted September 16, 2018 05:09 AM
If you're interested in customizing the wheels and tires on your vehicle, there are a few things you should know first.
Most importantly, the wheels you buy need to fit your vehicle. Not all wheels are created equal. Too many Belton drivers have bought a set of wheels that caught their eye, then, after going to the work of mounting them, have found that the wheels don't fit right and the tires rub against the vehicle when they turn or go over a bump.
To ensure a proper fit, you can consult with your Jones Automotive tire professional. He/she can also help you find tires that are suited to your driving habits as well as your vehicle. You may find their auto advice invaluable, and you'll probably be happier with your new wheels once you purchase them.
But if you just have to have that set of wheels, and you're willing to pay for them, you can modify your vehicle to fit the wheels. Again, you should seek a knowledgeable professional's help ahead of time. For example, if you want a bigger set of wheels on your pickup truck, you can get a suspension lift so they will fit the truck. A professional Belton custom wheel shop, like Jones Automotive, can help you get the work done right.
The anti-lock brakes and stability control system on your vehicle are engineered to work with a particular height of tire. This is another reason you should be careful when purchasing custom wheels in Belton. The new wheel and tire combo needs to match the height of the tires that came with your vehicle.
Your car's computer gauges your speed by the revolution of your tires and sends commands to the brakes and traction control based on that speed. If you put larger or smaller tires on your vehicle, your computer is calculating the wrong speed and, consequently, sending incorrect commands to the brakes and traction control. This can have serious consequences as it may result in damage to your vehicle or, worse, an accident.
If you change the size of your wheels, you need to get your engine's computer reprogrammed at Jones Automotive to accommodate the new tire size. New wheels shouldn't just fit your vehicle, they should also fit your lifestyle. There are hundreds of styles and sizes to choose from. You should do a little research about which wheels and tires will best fit your personality, give you the performance you want and meet your handling needs. We're not saying you shouldn't personalize your ride, we just want you to be happy with the result. Talk to us at Jones Automotive in Belton.
After all, good vehicle care isn't just about preventive maintenance. It's also about making good choices.
Tire Tread Depth for Belton, Texas Drivers
Posted December 10, 2017 12:13 PM
Driving on bald tires is like playing roulette. Though you may be fine today, eventually your luck is going to run out.
The Feds don't have any laws for tread depth, but 42 of the states, and all of Canada, do have regulations. They consider 2/32 of an inch to be the minimum legal tread depth. Two other states, including California, consider 1/32 to be the minimum and six states have no standards at all. Call us at Jones Automotive; (just call (254) 939-3785) to find out what your requirements are in the Belton, Texas, area.
Since 1968, U.S. law has required that a raised bar be molded across all tires. When tires are worn enough that this bar becomes visible, there's just 2/32 inch/1.6 mm of tread left. But does that older standard give Belton vehicles enough safety?
Consider this: Consumer Reports recommends tire replacement when tread reaches 4/32 inch/3.2 mm. And the recommendation is backed by some very compelling studies. Now before we go into the studies, you need to know that the issue is braking on wet surfaces.
We tend to think of the brakes doing all the stopping, but Belton vehicles also need to have effective tires to actually stop the car. When it's wet or snowy in Belton, Texas, the tread of the tire is critical to stopping power.
Picture this: you're driving in Belton over a water-covered stretch of road. Your tires need to be in contact with the road in order to stop. That means the tire has to channel the water away so the tire is contacting the road and not floating on a thin film of water – a condition known as hydroplaning. When there's not enough tread depth on a tire, it can't move the water out of the way and you start to hydroplane.
This is where the studies come in. We think Belton drivers will be surprised. A section of a test track was flooded with a thin layer of water. If you laid a dime flat on the track, the water would be deep enough to surround the coin, but not enough to submerge it.
A car and a full-sized pick-up truck were brought up to 70 mph/112 kph and then made a hard stop in the wet test area. Stopping distance and time were measured for three different tire depths. First, they tested new tires. Then tires worn to legal limits. And finally, tires with 4/32 inch/3.2 mm of tread were tested (the depth suggested by Consumer Reports.)
When the car with the legally worn tires had braked for the distance required to stop the car with new tires, it was still going 55 mph/89 kph. The stopping distance was nearly doubled. That means if you barely have room to stop with new tires, then you would hit the car in front of you at 55 mph/89 kph with the worn tires.
Now with the partially worn tires – at the depth recommended by Consumer Reports – the car was still going at 45 mph/72 kph at the point where new tires brought the car to a halt. That's a big improvement – you can see why Consumer Reports and others are calling for a new standard.
Now without going into all the details, let us tell you that stopping the truck with worn tires needed almost 1/10 of a mile (.16 km) of clear road ahead to come to a safe stop. How many Belton drivers follow that far behind the vehicle ahead? Obviously, this is a big safety issue.
The tests were conducted with the same vehicles but with different sets of tires. The brakes were the same, so the only variable was the tires.
How do people in Belton know when their tires are at 4/32 inch/3.2 mm? Well, it's pretty easy. Just insert an American quarter into the tread. Put it in upside down. If the tread doesn't cover George Washington's hairline, it's time to replace your tires. With a Canadian quarter, the tread should cover the numbers in the year stamp.
Now you may remember doing that with pennies. But an American penny gives you 2/32 inch/1.6 mm to Abraham Lincoln's head. The quarter is the new standard – 4/32 inch/3.2 mm.
Tires are a big ticket item, and most people in Belton, Texas, want to get thousands of miles/kilometers out of them. Just remember: driving on bald tires is like playing roulette.
Have Mr. Washington look at your tires today. If he recommends a new set, come see us at Jones Automotive in Belton.
How Much is Enough for Belton Auto Owners? Tire Tread Depth
Posted October 25, 2017 07:53 AM
Most Belton drivers know that tires wear out and that the wear has to do with tread depth. Most of us have heard that “bald” tires are dangerous, but most of us picture a tire with no tread at all when we think of a bald tire. And when we take our vehicles in for preventive maintenance, the technician tells us they're need to be replaced long before all the tread is worn off. Just how much tire tread wear is too much? And how can you tell? Tires are and their condition is important to the safe handling of a vehicle, so it's for Belton vehicle owners to know the answers to these questions.
First of all, it's important to understand that there may be a legal limit to tread wear. If your tires are worn past this limit, you have to replace them to be in compliance with Texas auto safety laws. That's why measuring your tread wear is part of a vehicle safety inspection.
In some jurisdictions, tread must be at least 1.6 millimeters or 2/32 of an inch thick. This standard has been in effect since 1968. But this standard has recently been called into question, and some Texas professionals are arguing that it be changed.
The safety issue that has brought this standard under scrutiny is the ability of a vehicle to stop on a wet surface. When a vehicle has trouble stopping, most Belton drivers immediately look at the brakes as the source of the problem. But tires are crucial to safe stopping distances because they provide the traction required in a stop.
A tire's contact with the road surface creates traction, which allows for effective braking. On a wet surface, a tire only has traction if it can get to the road's surface. So tire tread is designed to channel water out from under the tire to allow it to stay in contact with the road. If the tire can't shift the water, then it starts to “float.” This condition is called hydroplaning. It is very dangerous for Belton drivers since the vehicle won't stop no matter how hard the driver presses the brakes. Steering control is also lost.
A recent study tested the stopping ability of a passenger car and a full-sized pick-up on a road surface covered with only a dime's depth of water (less than a millimeter). The vehicles were traveling at 70 mph (112 kph) when they stopped on the wet surface. At 2/32 (1.6 mm) tread depth, the stopping distance was double that of a new tire. The passenger car was still traveling at 55 mph (89 kph) when it reached the stopping distance it experienced with new tires.
Let's suppose that you're on a busy Belton road in a light drizzle and a vehicle stops suddenly in front of you. You just bought new tires and you brake hard, missing the vehicle with only inches to spare. If you hadn't bought those new tires, you would have crashed into that vehicle at 55 mph (89 kph). That is a major difference.
What if your tires had a tread depth of 4/32 (3.2 mm)? You would have crashed into that vehicle at 45 mph (72 kph). Still not a good situation. But it's better.
Now what if you were driving that pick-up truck? You wouldn't have missed that vehicle in the first place, and you would have crashed at higher rates of speed in both of the other scenarios. The heavier your vehicle, the longer its stopping distance. It's a matter of physics.
The results of this test has led Consumer Reports and others to ask that the standard for tread wear be changed from 2/32 (1.6 mm) to 4/32 (3.2 mm). The increased standard will improve safety on the road and save lives here in Texas and nationally.
Of course, until the standard changes, you'll have to decide whether you'll be willing to replace your tires a little sooner.
You can use an American quarter to tell if your tread wear is down to 4/32 (3.2 mm). Place the quarter into the tread with George's head toward the tire and his neck toward you. If the tread doesn't cover George's hairline, you're under 4/32 (3.2 mm). With a Canadian quarter, the tread should cover the digits of the year.
You can measure the 2/32 inch (1.6 mm) tread wear with a penny. If the tread touches the top of Abe's head, it's at 2/32 (1.6 mm). Tires are super important when it comes to vehicle care. But their condition has a major impact on safety. We need to decide whether to sacrifice safety for economy. Keeping our tread wear above 4/32 in (3.2 mm) is good auto advice.
103 N Main Street
Belton, Texas 76513
Below 45 Degrees in Belton: Consider Winter Tires
Posted October 01, 2017 10:24 AM
Remember snow tires? They were basically just regular tires with big, knobby lugs to get them through deep snow. They were loud and rode hard, and Belton drivers couldn't wait to get them off the car. Then along came television advertisements for “all-season” radials. Texas drivers ran out and bought some and we thought we were done with snow tires forever.
Tires have come a long way since then. Modern winter tires sold in the Belton area are much better designed for the wide range of conditions that come with Texas winter weather. They are made with a rubber compound that helps them stay flexible in cold weather. Regular tires become hard and stiff at Belton temperatures below 45°F (7° C) which reduces their traction. That's a concern in winter, especially with snowy or wet conditions. But it also means that Belton drivers are better off with winter tires in cold weather even when it's dry.
The tread design on winter tires has been improved to move snow, slush and water. The lugs and grooves throw packed snow out of the tread as the tire rotates. This means the tread is open and ready to move more snow when it rolls around again. Summer tires can pack up with snow, which makes them more dangerous than a bald tire.
The all-season tire that is popular among Belton drivers is a compromise between summer and winter performance. This means they give adequate performance for Belton drivers in either season but aren't great in either. Summer tires give great performance in hot weather but lousy performance in winter. Belton drivers need to put more thought into their tire choices these days.
If you want the performance that new winter tires can give you, you should have them properly installed by your friendly and professional service advisor at Jones Automotive. It's best to purchase four snow tires and put them on all the wheels of your vehicle. But if you only want two, you need to put them on the rear of your vehicle, even if you drive a front-wheel drive vehicle. Belton drivers always want to put the tires with the best traction on the rear of the vehicle.
For more auto advice about tires for any Texas season, ask your friendly and knowledgeable Jones Automotive tire professional. They can help you find the right tire for your area and for your driving needs. For the best performance from your tires, whatever the season, don't forget preventive maintenance. Keep your tires up to pressure for the best durability, safety and performance, but don't overinflate them. Remember, good car care provides the safest road for all of us in Belton.
Buying the Right Tires and Wheels in Belton, Texas
Posted June 19, 2017 01:46 AM
Everyone in Belton, Texas eventually replaces their tires, whether it's because they're worn out or they're just looking for something different. There are so many great tire choices in Belton, it can be difficult to sort them out. Let's group the broad spectrum into several categories that will help in the selection process.
One category is often referred to as "summer tires". Summer tires are designed to be driven on the road when temperatures are generally above 45 degrees F (7 degrees C). Their tread design is optimized for traction on dry roads around Texas and they're also able to effectively displace water on rainy roads.
So if you live where its summer all year round, these tires will work well for you. If you like maximum performance in warm weather, but still live where it gets cold and snowy, you'll want to change your summer tires for winter tires as the weather starts to change.
There's a range of tires within the winter tire category. If you live where there's a lot of snow and ice, look for the mountain and snowflake icon that signifies a severe snow rating. If you have milder winters and still want a performance component, they make a winter tire for you as well.
For many people, an all-season tire is the answer. You will give up some of the performance at the extreme ends of the summer tire/ winter tire spectrum, but you will find a long wearing tire that gives both good highway performance and winter traction on our Belton, Texas, roads.
Within the all-season category, there are many choices that your tire advisor at Jones Automotive can help you evaluate.
Jones Automotive Advice on Buying New Tires
Posted May 31, 2017 09:11 AM
Today's tires and wheels offer a lot of options for every Belton driver's style, habits and driving conditions.
Tires are designed for high-performance in winter or summer and even come in a long-wearing variety for all Texas seasons.
Belton off-roaders should be excited about the options available to them as well. The tread on off-road tires is designed to handle the wear from bumps and rocks. The tires' high profile protects rims from damage.
But what if you own an SUV but aren't interested in off-roading around Texas? You can change out those high-profile beasts for a lower, wider look if it suits your style.
Jones Automotive tire professionals can offer great auto advice on how to choose tires that match your needs and style.
If you just need to purchase new tires, a tire professional at Jones Automotive can also help you select the tires that are best for your driving needs and habits. The right tires will protect you and your vehicle on the road.
So personalize your vehicle, but don't forget that good car care will keep that sassy ride on the road in Belton a lot longer.
Helping Belton Drivers Get the Right Tires
Posted May 23, 2017 09:19 AM
Every Belton vehicle owner has to purchase tires at some time or another, so it's a good idea to understand what the choices are. The best seasonal performance is achieved by purchasing tires to match the season you are driving in. Summer tires are designed for hot temperatures. The tread is engineered for good traction on dry or rainy Texas roads. But the rubber compound in summer tires gets stiff when temperatures drop below 45°F (7°C), and snow and mud can pack into the tread, reducing the traction of the tire.
Winter tires are designed for good traction on snowy surfaces. The tread actually throws snow off of the tire as the wheel turns. The rubber compound in a winter tire is soft so that it will remain flexible at temperatures below 45°F (7°C). At higher temperatures, however, the softer rubber wears down rapidly.
All-season tires sacrifice some of the extreme performance of summer or winter tires, but they maintain adequate traction in either type of Belton weather.
So your first consideration when buying a tire is where you live in Texas, and where you usually drive. If you require maximum summer and winter performance you can go with dedicated summer and winter tires; you would just need to change out your tires each spring and fall.
For serious winter driving in Texas, look for tires with a severe snow rating. These tires are labeled with a mountain-and-snowflake logo.
Your second consideration is the quality of tire to purchase. Summer, winter and all-season tires come in a variety of grades and styles at Texas tire stores. Belton drivers will want to purchase a tire that will give them good wear and that will handle their driving style and road conditions. Your Jones Automotive tire professional can give you auto advice as to which type of tire will best fit your needs.
Belton vehicle owners who drive off-road around Texas may want to look at a high-grade tire that is designed for off-road use. These tires are designed to handle the extra wear of off-roading while still giving good performance on Belton streets and roads. There are a number of options to choose from so that you can find the right tire whether you are only an occasional off-road explorer or a serious rock climber.
New wheels can be purchased in Belton as a statement of style or to add personality to your vehicle. There are almost unlimited options. If you change the size of the wheels on your vehicle, however, you will need to get some professional help to make your vehicle compatible with its new wheels. Talk to your Jones Automotive for more information about tires.
Jones Automotive Tire Safety: Washington vs. Lincoln
Posted May 07, 2017 09:20 AM
Welcome to the Jones Automotive automotive blog. Today, let's talk about the effect of tire wear.
Let's focus on stopping in wet Belton conditions. In order for a tire to have good contact with the road, it has to move the water out of the way. If it can't move the water, the tire will actually ride on top of a thin film of water.
That's called hydroplaning. If it's really bad, Belton drivers can actually spin out of control - endangering themselves and the other drivers around them. At best, you won't stop as fast.
So how does a tire move water? It has channels for water to flow through. Look at your vehicle tire and you'll see channels: channels that run around the tire and channels that flow across the tire. They're designed to direct water away from the tire so it can contact the road better.
And the deeper the channel, the more water it can move. A brand new Jones Automotive tire has very deep channels and can easily move a lot of water. As the tire wears down, the channels become shallower and can move less water. When it wears down enough, it can seriously affect your ability to stop your vehicle on wet Belton roads.
So that's why it's so important for Belton drivers to replace their vehicle tires when they get worn. Consumer Reports and other advocate groups call for a standard of 3/32 of an inch and they have the studies to prove it.
At Jones Automotive, we want our customers to know that the deeper recommended tread depth makes a big difference. Stopping distances are cut dramatically on wet Belton streets. A safe stop from Texas speeds with 4/32 of an inch of tread would result in a crash with worn out tires.
There's an easy way to tell when a tire's worn to 4/32 of an inch.
Just insert a quarter into the tread. Put it in upside down. If the tread doesn't cover George Washington's hairline, it's time to replace your vehicle tires. With a Canadian quarter, the tread should cover the numbers in the year stamp.
Many Belton residents have heard of this technique using a penny and Abe Lincoln's head - the old method. That measure gives you 2/32 of an inch – half the suggested amount. Of course, vehicle tires are a major purchase. Most of us in Belton want to get as many miles out of them as we can. But there's a real safety trade-off. It's your choice.