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Tire Wear

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  • Tire Wear

    I have a 2003 Cavalier. I bought a set of Goodyear Assurance Triple Tread tires back in September. The car had 90,000 miles on it then. I also replaced the struts and had an alignment. I then drove 10,000 and had the tires rotated and then again at 19,000, I felt a vibration in the car and I figured the tires were out of balance. But the vibration persisted, and at 25,000, the dealer said the tires were cupped and needed to be replaced. They gave me a 50% credit, and I bought 4 new tires. Has anyone else experienced unusual tire wear like this? I mainly drive highway miles, about 800 a week.
    Is it possible the extra weight in the trunk is causing a problem?

  • #2
    Re: Tire Wear

    No, this is not normal. Which tires were cupping ? ---most likely the fronts. Just because you had an alignment, it doesn't mean it was done right. Toe-in or cross-camber are the worst problems for tire wear. When you do it, have a four wheel alignment done. Even though the rear suspension is almost non-adjustable, they can check the thrust caused by the rear axle and take that into account when setting up the front suspension. Highway driving should be fairly easy on tire wear. You might want to do rotations at 5000 miles. Seems with all the miles you put on the car, you must have gotten over your earlier engine problems .


    • #3
      Re: Tire Wear

      Well all four were cupped, but I don't which end was causing the problem. That's why I asked if the rear may be the problem. A friend suggested not rotating, then you could see where the problem was, but I didn't want to ruin two new tires by not rotating. This dealer covers free rotation every 6000, so I am going to be right on the money this time.
      And yes, I am over the injector problem. Thank you again for all of your help.


      • #4
        Re: Tire Wear

        I had a tire on the front of my '01 cavalier that became very scalloped. There was an obvious vibration, but only at certain speeds. I had a bad hub, and after replacement, it seemed to cure the problem.

        "Cupping" is generally caused by worn or damaged parts, especially worn
        struts or shock absorbers, which actually could be related to the weight of the tank. Do you get any vibration or fluttering in the steering

        When you say the tires are "cupped," do you mean that they have a scalloped
        appearance across the entire width of the tire tread or just on the outer or
        inner edges?

        If just on the outer tread, try increasing tire pressure by 5 PSI cold.

        First and foremost though, I'd check to make sure your bearings are ok. It's easy to do...

        If your bearings are bad, you should definitely complain to the guys who did your alignment, there is no way that this should go unnoticed when aligning. You can align all you want, but as soon as you turn a corner, your bearings shift, and your car is no longer aligned.
        Last edited by kirkbenge; 05-28-2009, 01:37 AM.


        • #5
          Re: Tire Wear

          I did do a home check on the bearings and everything felt normal.
          I just had the new tires I bought rotated after my first 6000. The steering did have some good vibration in it before I changed to the new tires. There is a very slight vibration now, but I think it feels like it is the whole car. Not the steering any more, the new tires cured that.
          I had them check the alignment, everything was good there as well.
          I had the tire dealer check out the front end for the bearings or anything else that may cause a problem, and they said everything was tight.
          I had the struts replaced 40,000 miles ago. Could they have gone bad after only 25k?
          The small vibration is more annoying than anything, it's liveable, but nothing has changed as far as the potential for cupped tires again unless it's the fact that I didn't rotate soon enough.
          Also, does adding nitrogen instead of compressed air have any benefit?


          • #6
            Re: Tire Wear

            Originally posted by Grimmy View Post
            Also, does adding nitrogen instead of compressed air have any benefit?
            Nitrogen is going to a have a marginal benefit as the tire will not have any moisture inside; it's suposed to maintain pressure better than air (with air being about 80% Nitrogen it doesn't seem like Oxygen and trace gasses would have that much effect, but I don't have data to back that up). My personal opinion is that it's more for marketing value when the tire shop gives you the nice green valve stem caps.
            2008 GX (extended range, trunkless version)
            Polished Metal Metallic 2012 Civic Natural Gas
            Fuelmaker FMQ-2-36 (since 2001)
            Previously owned: 2000 GX (11 years), 1995 Bi-fuel Sonoma, 2000 Bifuel Tahoe, 2000 Bi-fuel F150