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Why do we balance our wheels and tires?

We've all been there. We drive down the road and we are about to shake out of the driver’s seat.  Many different things could be wrong, from separated tire tread, rough road conditions, or it could be from an unbalanced wheel.  Think about a washing machine off kilter.  It will shake all over the place if too many clothes are on one side or the other.  The wheel does the same thing if the weight is off balance. 

When a new wheel is mounted to an axle with a new tire it has to be balanced. The weight of the wheel has to be even when the wheel spins around the axle.  Unfortunately this isn’t just a one and done project.  You wheel are consistently becoming unbalanced.  Every pot hole, speed bump, corner you take affects the balance.  This can cause a vibration and uneven tire wear.  Re-balancing a tire is a good place to start when you have a vibration. Typically you will start to feel vibrations at higher speeds around or above 40 mph. 

Also note that there is a difference between a balance and a rotate.  Balancing involves taking the tire off the vehicles and placing it onto a machine what will determine the weight distribution of the spinning wheel and tire so that it spins correctly.  Rotating, which we’ll discuss in next week’s blog, involves moving tires from the front to back and or driver side to passenger side.  Many times people ask for a balance and rotate, when they really only need to rotate their tires.  Only ask for a balance if you are having vibrations or uneven tread wear.

It’s recommended that you rotate and balance your tires every 5,000 to 6,000 depending on the brand of tires. It also depends on driving conditions and your one driving habits.  So keep an eye on your tires and make sure you are taking care of them, so they can take care of you!


Submit your questions here and if we choose your question to answer in our blog, you’ll receive a free oil change!

The 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 Monday, May 26, 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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