Buyers' advice, Motoring News, vehicle maintenance

Tyres time? Here’s the lowdown on high points for choice

TRAINING TIME AT BRIDGESTONE: New staff at the factory get expert advice – the same applies to the information that a reputable tyre dealer will give to you when tyre-change time comes around. Image: Bridgestone

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa – Tyres. Potentially expensive wear items on whatever you drive. from two to 22 wheels, but then how much are your, your family’s, or your employees’ lives worth?

Some people – perhaps with good reason if they don’t drive much or just to pop down to the shops – go for the cheapest or blindly follow the rubber retailer’s recommendation.

So says Chantel Baxter, product and price manager at Bridgestone SS which makes Firestone and Bridgestone tyres.

INFORMATION IS VITAL

“Some basic homework before heading to a tyre dealer,” she adds, ”will help you to choose the correct tyre for your vehicle and driving style. Armed with the right information, choosing the right tyre should be easy.”

First, decide on your driving style. Speed, or comfort? Long-distance or short? And, if your daily wheels are under a bakkie, do you often head off-road?

Research the vehicle manufacturer’s tyre specifications (they should be in your vehicle’s handbook) and weigh up whether you driving style matches those specs, some handbooks carry the advice on suitable-for-purpose tyre choice.

Check your vehicle insurance/warranty. Choosing rubber outside the vehicle’s specification could determine a payout – or not – should the unthinkable happen.

TRY GOOGLE FOR MORE INFO

”Reputable tyre-makers,” Chantel told The Corner ”make a range of tyres designed for varying conditions and with different budgets. A fast driver with a slim budget might not be able to afford top-of-the-range, ultra-high-performance, rubber but there will usually be a suitable high-performance tyre at a lower price.

“Google is a great resource in this regard. Search for forums about your vehicle but at the very least, when you walk into the tyre dealership, you should already clearly understand how you drive and have some idea about tyres that might suit your vehicle and driving style.

”That will put you in a good position to benefit from the advice of the dealer – these but you need to know what questions to ask.

“Choosing the right tyres will improve the performance and safety of your vehicle – they are the only product that keeps you on the road so it’s worth taking the trouble to do it right.”

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