Tag Archives for " Irregular tread wear "

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What does the tread wear on truck tyres tell a fleet manager?

5 types of tread wear and how to correct them

Your fleet depends on their tyres. The more wear they suffer, the more fuel your trucks will use. Irregular tread wear makes handling more difficult and lengthens braking distances, and this makes your trucks less safe – risking the lives of drivers, other road users and pedestrians.

What causes irregular tread wear?

There are many reasons tyres wear irregularly. On steering axles, you’ll often find that tyres wear more on one shoulder (most commonly the nearside shoulder) as road cambers, cornering, and roundabouts take their toll.

On drive axles, tyres tend to wear faster on the inner edge of inner tyres. Under- or overinflation also causes irregular tread wear, as does a poor wheel alignment.

5 types of tread wear and how to correct them

Here are the five types of irregular tread wear that your truck tyres might suffer, with likely cause and corrective measures you should take.

1.    Tread wear in the centre

If your tyre tread is worn along the centre of the tyre, the most likely cause is overinflation. However, it may also be caused by mismatched tyres and rims, or by the high torque on drive axles.

Make sure that the correct tyres are applied for the rims used, and ensure that the tyre pressure is adjusted to the recommended pressure according to location and load.

2.    Tread wear on both shoulders

This may also be caused by incorrect matching of tyres and rims, but is more likely caused by underinflation.

Once more, check to ensure the tyres and rims match, and adjust inflation pressure accordingly.

3.    Tread wear on one shoulder

Should a truck’s tyre tread be worn on one shoulder, there are several possible causes:

  • Excessive toe or camber, caused by misalignment
  • Non-parallel axles
  • Bent axle
  • Incorrect tyre and wheel assembly
  • Severe operating conditions

In this case, it is important to identify the cause of the tyre wear and correct any mechanical faults. If the tread wear is not too severe, it may be possible to turn the tyre on the rim.

4.    Tread wear is diagonal

Diagonal tread wear also has many possible causes:

  • Dismounting of tyre and wheel assembly to the trailer
  • Mismatched twins
  • Driving at high speed when empty
  • Improper bearing adjustment
  • Toe-out alignment

Identify the fault that is causing the irregular tread wear, and correct it. If the wear is not too severe, the tyre may be turned on the rim. If the tyre wear is caused by driving style, some driver education will be necessary.

5.    Tread wear is in flat spots

Flat spots on the tyre are usually caused by poor driving technique, with sharp braking causing wheels to lock and wear quickly in patches. However, it may also be that the truck’s braking system needs adjusting – for example, locking brakes may be caused by the incorrect adjustment of trailer brake controls.

Drivers should be reminded of driving technique and to avoid harsh braking, and braking systems should be checked and corrected.

Turning the tyre on the rim

Turning the tyre on the rim can extend the life of a tyre and reduce tyre costs. However, it must be done early enough so that wear is equalised. If the difference in the tread is 3mm or greater between shoulders, you should turn the tyre.

Wear on the sidewall could also be a sign that the tyre should be turned. If the lettering or sidewall indicator is disappearing, you should have the tyre checked to ensure that it is safe to turn.

At Darra Tyres, we provide a 24/7 commercial outside service, outside fitting, and truck callout service, in addition to our on-site services. To discover why so many businesses in Brisbane put their faith in our technicians, contact Darra Tyres today.

Keeping your family and fleet safely on the road,

Kevin Wood

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