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Author: PSUEngineer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 71123  
Subject: Tires Date: 4/12/2013 5:49 PM
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I ran over something the size of a lug nut that punctured the tread. The tire place didn't know what the object was. To me it looked like a tip off of a powerwasher. So I need at least one tire to be replaced. I have a 2008 Toyota Highlander with 4-wheel drive. Generally, you want all the tread on the tires to be the same depth. Right now, the tires have 6/32 tread left. The original depth is 10/32. My tire dealer says that a vehicle like mine can have a difference in tread depth of 4/32 which puts mine right at the edge of being okay by their standards. I called the dealer and officially they say all tires should have the same tread depth. Off the record, they said I'd be okay.

Right now, the plans are to replace two tires with the same brand which are General Grabbers. I'm starting to rethink that. I'm thinking that instead of replacing two so I can get another 10K to 20K miles, I just go ahead and put a new set of four tires on it. My plans are to switch to Michelin LTX M/S since the current tires are my second set of Generals that are not getting much more than 40K miles on them. I know a few people who are getting close to 100K out of Michelins.

Thoughts?

PSU
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Author: MacNugget Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69967 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/12/2013 6:25 PM
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If I get 10K out of my tires I consider it an anomaly, and 6K is more normal (for the rears). 40K or 100K both sound like crazy talk to me. So maybe I'm coming at this from a slightly skewed perspective... :)

Replacing two at a time is perfectly reasonable. If given a choice, I'd put the new tires in the front and keep old tires in the rear.

Another 10K to 20K of expected life from the two older tires seems like a fairly significant number of miles to just "throw away" in the interest of getting more miles out of your tires. Sounds counter-productive to me.

The real catch is that if you want to switch to a new brand (which I wouldn't recommend doing unless you replace all four) is that you'll face the same dilemma when the two old tires are finally used up but the two new ones you buy now won't be due for replacement yet.

So if you do want to try a different brand, you're going to have to toss out at least a pair of perfectly good tires to do so. It's either now or later.

So if trying the Michelins is worth that, there's no reason not to just do it now.

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Author: ptheland Big gold star, 5000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69968 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/12/2013 7:41 PM
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I faced a similar issue about a year ago - a fender bender tore one tire.

In my case, I've got a front wheel drive car, so the front wears much faster than the rears. I'm using an oddball tire rotation scheme to keep that newer tire on the front of the car until it wears down to match the rest of the set.

Something like that might work for you, if one end of the car wears differently from the other.

--Peter

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Author: ToddTruby Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69969 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/12/2013 8:28 PM
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Some places can shave tires so you only have to buy one and they still match. I always had a problem taking a perfectly good tire and grinding the tread off, but I guess you are doing the same thing by tossing a perfectly good partially worn tire on the other side of the damaged one.

I think Tire Rack even offers shaving.

Just another option if you hadn't considered it.

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Author: PSUEngineer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69970 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/12/2013 8:32 PM
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Another 10K to 20K of expected life from the two older tires seems like a fairly significant number of miles to just "throw away" in the interest of getting more miles out of your tires. Sounds counter-productive to me.

I'm more concerned about any effect on the transfer case due to different diameter tires on the front and back axles. I don't want to try to save a little money today but end up spending more tomorrow.

The real catch is that if you want to switch to a new brand (which I wouldn't recommend doing unless you replace all four) is that you'll face the same dilemma when the two old tires are finally used up but the two new ones you buy now won't be due for replacement yet.

So if you do want to try a different brand, you're going to have to toss out at least a pair of perfectly good tires to do so. It's either now or later.


Part of the decision is due to the price of the tires. The Michelins are $189 per tire while the General tires are on sale for $110 (regularly $147). Since the blown tire is 100% covered under warranty, it'll cost me $110 (plus installation and other fees) for a pair of Generals or the cost of four Michelins minus credit for old General tire.

PSU

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Author: PSUEngineer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69971 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/12/2013 8:35 PM
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Some places can shave tires so you only have to buy one and they still match. I always had a problem taking a perfectly good tire and grinding the tread off, but I guess you are doing the same thing by tossing a perfectly good partially worn tire on the other side of the damaged one.

I think Tire Rack even offers shaving.

Just another option if you hadn't considered it.


Another option is to call around to all the used tire places in town for a similar worn tire of the same brand and size. I did that years ago with one vehicle.

PSU

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Author: pauleckler Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69972 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/12/2013 10:40 PM
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Michelin tires were the first radials and earned a great reputation for mileage back in the days when most of us had bias belted tires that ran abt 20k miles.

They are quality tires, but I seem to notice more problems with punctures with Michelins. That makes me think the rubber is softer than some brands. My current Ford Crown Victoria came equipped with Michelins. I have replaced two of them due to side wall punctures that could not be repaired. I think I'm likely to get abt 50K miles on these. My last Crown Vic had Bridgestones that went 70k miles.

Michelins are ok but they are no longer my first choice tires.

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Author: MacNugget Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69973 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/12/2013 11:41 PM
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Michelins are ok but they are no longer my first choice tires.

I don't think you can really compare tires just by brand. Michelin have at least twenty-nine different models of passenger car tire not even looking at their snow/ice models or competition-focused models (1). Each of those twenty-nine kinds of Michelin tire was designed and produced with different goals for wear, life, grip, handling, and pricing. For sure there are a few that you might love and more than a few which are totally inappropriate for your needs. Saying that "Michelins are ok" seems inadequate and misleading to me.

I got 6,000 miles from my last set of tires (Yokohama AD08) and replaced them today with a set of Michelins (Pilot SS) based on feedback from others and because I enjoy trying different tires. It would be nice to get 10,000 miles from the Michelins, but I'm not counting on it. I will almost certainly go back to Bridgestone (RE11) when they're done unless I'm completely blown away by how they perform because I really like the RE11 and I want a familiar tire for a my next set. My car came with Michelins (Sport Cup) which I didn't care for at all.

It's all relative.

(1) http://www.tirerack.com/tires/michelin/michelin-tires.jsp

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Author: LLRinCO Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69974 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/12/2013 11:47 PM
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I got Michelins for my Lexus RX - same basic SUV as the Highlander. I got the tires at Costco, they were the ones the dealer recommended, but I only got about 30K out of them.

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Author: eudaimon6 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69975 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/13/2013 8:58 PM
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You keep cars a long time. I like Michelin tires.

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Author: devoish Big red star, 1000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69976 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/14/2013 4:00 PM
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PSU,

Because it is still early springtime you are probably not using the 4wd for a while so harming the transfer case is unlikely.
You could call a junk yard or two, find a matching tire with similar wear and just replace the one you need.
Depending upon the model grabber you have (probably HTS?) a similar tread even in a different brand should not be hard to find.
Even more likely, in many cases people in similar situations sometimes opt for all four tires and leave 2-3 perfectly good used tires at the the tire shop.
Maybe you can get back in good shape for less than $75.

Another thought is to use your matching spare if you have one.

Either option might offer you enough time to shop for a good deal on the tires you want and get you 8 more months of value out of the tires you own now, which at your 40,000 mile life expectancy is about 1/4 of their use if you put on "normal" mileage of 12000 per year.

Hope that helps,
Steven

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Author: PSUEngineer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69977 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/14/2013 8:18 PM
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Because it is still early springtime you are probably not using the 4wd for a while so harming the transfer case is unlikely.
You could call a junk yard or two, find a matching tire with similar wear and just replace the one you need.
Depending upon the model grabber you have (probably HTS?) a similar tread even in a different brand should not be hard to find.
Even more likely, in many cases people in similar situations sometimes opt for all four tires and leave 2-3 perfectly good used tires at the the tire shop.
Maybe you can get back in good shape for less than $75.


I could have done all that and have in the past. Due to a busy work schedule and needing time to meet heating/AC installers for estimates on a new AC system, I decided that I didn't have time to search around time for a used tire.

Either option might offer you enough time to shop for a good deal on the tires you want and get you 8 more months of value out of the tires you own now, which at your 40,000 mile life expectancy is about 1/4 of their use if you put on "normal" mileage of 12000 per year.

I drive 20K miles per year. My tire installer discussed putting on two new General tires now and then another two in the next rotation or two. At that point, all four tires would have near the same tread depth. I told him that if I would be replace all of them within the next year, I'd rather just put on four Michelin tires right now. He made me a good deal (one free Michelin to replace the blown one and $20 credit on the other tires), I put on four new Michelin tires.

PSU

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Author: devoish Big red star, 1000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69978 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/15/2013 7:04 PM
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Somebody who needs one or two partially worn grabbers thanks you!

Steven

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Author: PSUEngineer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69979 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/16/2013 10:04 AM
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Somebody who needs one or two partially worn grabbers thanks you!

I'm a charitable person.

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Author: Milligram46 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 69980 of 71123
Subject: Re: Tires Date: 4/18/2013 9:42 PM
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The problem is with the variance in outer diameter, the differentials could detect the difference in wheel spin (the worn down tires have faster rotation and engage) - burning the differential out. This is the problem with AWD or 4WD and having different tire sizes.

I don't know your specific tire size but for the sake of argument lets say 265/60R17. A nice SUV/CUV sized tire.

The outer diameter would be 29.52 inches X 25.4 = 749.81 MM.

The three tires that are worn down we need to remove 8mM, remember, for outer diameter you need to include it twice, one for one side and one on the other. So the od on the other tires is 741.81 MM, or 29.21 inches.

The difference is total od is .31 inches.

The new tire will travel 92.73 inches in a single revolution.

The older tires will travel 91.76 inches in a single revolution.

This thankfully is close enough for math to call it one inch.

At 60 MPH, driving for an hour you will travel 3,801,600 inches.

Your new tire will revolve 40,996 times to "roll" 3,801,600 inches.

Your older tires will revolve 41,430 times to "roll" 3,801,600 inches.

The difference is 434 less revolutions on the new tire, per hour at highway speed. That is about 7-1/2 revolutions per minute.

Now here is the magic question after all that math - is that variance enough to make the differential engage? To make the system think three wheels are slipping and the fourth wheel has better traction. If the answer is yes - it is going to get expensive when the differential overheats and eats itself.

The one assumption in this math is the tire size. The bigger the outer diameter, the bigger the difference 4MM makes. The smaller the outer diamater, the less difference 4MM makes.

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