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Curbs and Tires

Like water and oil, curbs and tires don’t mix. Ramming into curbs has a negative effect, as you could probably guess, on your tires and alignment.  The term curbing your tire in the proper sense of the word is turning your tire when you are on a grade so if your vehicle happens to get knocked out of gear, the tire will run against the curb and hopefully prevent it from rolling down the hill to certain danger and destruction. Others may use this term when they see someone cut a corner to sharp and runs their tire on the curb, not that we ever do that...  When parking at a 3% grade, or 1.72 degrees, most state laws require you to ‘curb’ your tire.  This degree looks pretty flat, so it might make the habit of turning your wheel when you park either to the left if you if you’re parking up hill, or to the right facing down hill.

There are a few different types of curbs, some are rounded curb and some are ninety degree curbs. We should all avoid parking and hitting the ninety degree curb.  This could be potentially dangerous to not only the sidewall, but may cause serious damage to the wheel itself. Then if the wheel get bent, this causes a whole new set of problems with the tires on down the road (pardon the pun).  The rounded curbs are most commonly parked on.  This does put stress on the sidewalls which could, over time, accelerate the breakdown of the tire.  It’s a good habit to stay away from running the tire against the curb and parking on them over the life of the tire. 

Running into curbs can cause cutting or tearing chunks out of your sidewall, messing up a thick white wall and lettering, to potential damage to the actual wheel itself if you curb your tire hard enough.  Parking partially on a curb also takes a toll on your alignment.  With your alignment jeopardized, this starts a chain reaction.  From an uncomfortable ride, decreased steering response, uneven tire wear, even problems with power steering, parking on the curb could have drastic consequences.

Parking on curbs over a long period of time, it may cause problem with other components such as your tie rod ends and ball joints giving you a very uncomfortable ride with time and money spent on repairs. Park with care and mind the curbs!  Also, don’t forget to check you tire pressure regularly!

If you would like for us to cover a particular topic or have a question about tires or auto care, submit your request/questions here, and if we choose your submission in our blog, you’ll receive a free oil change!

Free oil change will be given once monthly to the person that submitted the question that’s answered in the blog.  No purchase necessary.  Must be 18 years or older and a licensed driver. Not valid with any other offer. 



Written on Tuesday, March 11, 2014 by
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Bowen Tire is a pillar of the Owensboro, KY community. Bowen Tire is a leader in offering name brand tires, wheels, auto repair and brake services for customers located in and around the Owensboro, Kentucky area. Our goal is to focus on customer service. It is the foundation of our business. Bowen Tire employs a well-trained staff specializing in the sale and installation of passenger car, performance and light truck or SUV tires. Custom wheels are available at Bowen Tire. Special wheels and rims compliment any tire or customer vehicle. Complete under-car services, such as oil changes, brakes, shocks, struts, alignment, and transmission fluid flush for both foreign and domestic vehicles are readily available at competitive prices. Take this opportunity to browse Bowen Tire website or call us for personalized service.

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