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Replacing your tires – Money-saving tips

SPONSORED • Published: Thursday, May 15, 2014 12:49 p.m. CST • Updated: Wednesday, June 18, 2014 12:38 p.m. CST
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It’s important for your safety and the safety of your passengers to make sure your tires are roadworthy, especially in inclement weather.

If it’s time to replace them there are several money-saving tips.

First, check for signs of wear on the outside of your tires.

Then determine what’s left of your tire tread. Historically, this has been done with the “penny test,” placing a penny with Lincoln’s head upside down, into the thickest part of the tread, at different points around the tire. If you can see the top of Lincoln’s head it means it’s time to replace your tires, and right away.

However, the “penny test” slowly is being replaced by the Quarter Test, using the same procedure, only with Washington’s head. A quarter, being larger, offers a similar warning when there’s more tread remaining on a tire, and that means longer breaking ability, which equals increased safety.

You may not need to replace all four tires, but never buy just one, except in case of emergency. Experts say you always should replace at least two tires, front or back, at the same time, to help your car grip the road better and ensure more even wear for a safer - and smoother - ride, and a tire that lasts a lot longer.

Well-known names generally produce reliable tires, but do your homework online. There are some lesser-known brands that offer just as much safety and wear, and can save you quite a bit on your tire purchase.

Any time you purchase new tires, make sure to ask your tire replacement professional for a wheel alignment to ensure even wear. If your wheels are out of alignment, you’ll experience a rougher ride, and your tires will wear unevenly and wear out faster, costing you way more money in the long run. Check out tire options at

Rod Baker Ford, 815-436-5681, 16101S. Lincoln Highway, Plainfield, IL

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