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Jacket
04-12-2011, 11:40 AM
Maybe I'm just stuck in a time warp back to my 1st car ('66 Mustang), but I had always managed tire rotation with the assumption that the rear tires typically wore faster in RWD vehicles (at least those that are primarily RWD). I guess my assumption would be that the drive axle would put more wear on the tires, exaggerated by any heavy acceleration, burnouts, or donuts (which would be appropriate and fun for a 16 yr old in a 66 Mustang....).

Fast forward to the present - I'm adding a 5th tire to a rotation on my Cruiser where the other 4 tires are ahead in tread wear by a few thousand miles. My original thought was to start the new tire on the driver side rear, and try to rotate it more (but not exclusively) in the rear of the truck to "catch up" to the other 4 tires. But I did a bit of Googl'ing, and it seems as though heavy 4wd vehicles with a SFA and more overall weight distributed in the front will wear the front tires at a faster rate than the rears - largely due to the weight shifting forward when braking.

So maybe this is a :homer: moment for me - does that sound right to you guys in your experiences? And if so, then I should probably start the new tire at the driver front, and rotate it with a bias toward keeping up front more than on the rear axle? Or just keep the rotation normal, except that the new tire never gets relegated to spare tire duty?

treerootCO
04-12-2011, 11:59 AM
Not a problem if you do the work yourself but, Discount refused to mount my 'good' tires on the rear of my pickup. I needed to replace a damaged tire and asked that they mount the new tire on the back. They said it was a new policy and couldn't due to legal reasons.

60wag
04-12-2011, 12:48 PM
My fronts wear faster than the rears on both the 80 and my front wheel drive cars. I've taken to measuring the tread depth on all of the tires - the one with the least tread left becomes the spare, the two with the most tread go in front and what's left over goes in back.

rover67
04-12-2011, 02:14 PM
my fronts wear much faster on the 60.

I tend to think that Discount and other places won't mount the more worn ones on the back because they don't want the car to oversteer due to worn tires in the rear.. I have to think that they tend to think that understeer is better and safe as does the majority of the auto industry.

Jacket
04-12-2011, 02:45 PM
Yea - I didn't want to get in any kind of debate with the tire store about what was appropriate or not, so I just dropped off an old tire at the shop and had them mount a new one on the rim.

Nay
04-12-2011, 02:46 PM
My fronts are also faster, but it isn't much.

I would just rotate it in - if you are in "normal" rotation of new tires at the first rotation point there should be no issues.

I would personally put it on the rear as there is less ability to impact steering feel if you are going to get anything going on in that regard, but it seems unlikely.

My current set of Trxus doesn't even like to be rotated. I tried twice and each time picked up some unfavorable outputs (pulling), so I finally just left the two tires that clearly want to be on the rear axle on the rear axle. At 20K miles I still have 60% tread and everything is nice and smooth, so I'm gonna go by feel rather than rulebook :hill:

nakman
04-12-2011, 11:18 PM
I agree with Nay's Trxus sentiment.. they have their own set of needs and it's more important to keep them happy than to rotate them equally.

For more predictable tires, I do like the 5 tire rotation. Last time I had Discount rotate my tires they followed my diagram, even though usually I do it myself.

Spare goes to Left Front. Left Front to Left rear, Left rear to right front, right front to right rear, and right rear to spare.

Air Randy
04-13-2011, 11:34 AM
If you have a spool, lunch box locker or detroit type locker in the rear, your rears will wear faster as the outside tire tends to get dragged around corners when turning.

If you have an open non-locking diff in back, the fronts will always wear faster because of the camber/caster built in to the front axle and the tendency to "push" the front tires through corners which scrubs off rubber.

A big part of getting extended wear out of tires is keeping correct air pressure and keeping the tires balanced. Once they start to cup out the wear acclerates.

Make sure the tires you're running don't have a directional tread, that will impact the way you rotate them. If not, nowadays most people dont incorproate the 5th tire into the pattern. They keep it as a spare only and do the criss-cross rotation pattern. That way all 4 tires tend to wear out close to equally, then you can just buy 3 new tires and put the best used one as your spare.

subzali
04-13-2011, 11:38 AM
my fronts wear much faster on the 60.

I tend to think that Discount and other places won't mount the more worn ones on the back because they don't want the car to oversteer due to worn tires in the rear.. I have to think that they tend to think that understeer is better and safe as does the majority of the auto industry.

That's exactly their thinking and the lip treatment I received when I was in there a couple days ago with my wife's tires.

Red_Chili
04-13-2011, 11:44 AM
Talk to Bill at the Littleton Discount (Belleview and Santa Fe). He understands 4x4s and does what needs to be done, lawyers be darned. I am extremely pleased with his service.

Nay
04-13-2011, 02:10 PM
If not, nowadays most people dont incorproate the 5th tire into the pattern. They keep it as a spare only and do the criss-cross rotation pattern. That way all 4 tires tend to wear out close to equally, then you can just buy 3 new tires and put the best used one as your spare.

The only problem with this is that rubber compounds change over time, so if you keep a spare for 3 years that is a different tire than the other three you buy new, even if it never touches the ground as a spare. The best life of a tire is in its first 3 years, which is why you want to buy softer and more aggressive tires if you don't drive that many miles annually, i.e. you want to wear out your tires by four years.

That's why I typically try to find a used spare in the size I want, buy four new tires, and when I am done with the four one becomes a spare, a second may become a 'spare spare' if I have bought a somewhat unique tire or size, and two get sold to other people as spares.

Then I buy four new next time around and have a good spare with a backup and keep that cycle going.

TIMZTOY
04-13-2011, 03:01 PM
the fronts always ware faster under normal driving conditions (not heavy throtle 16yr old driving) because if the turning. when turning the tires ride more on the edges because of the caster and camber.

Rzeppa
04-13-2011, 03:40 PM
My fronts have always worn faster than the rears - it is from turning. I live where there just aren't many straight sections of road. This is true for my lock-right rigs as well as my open diff rigs. You can see how the outside edges of the fronts wear faster than the middles too.

I have always purchased tires 5 at a time and always done 5 tire rotation.