Tires are the single most important safety feature on your car. They are the only thing that connects the car to the road, and life-saving technologies like antilock brakes and electronic stability control cannot do their job if the tires don't have a good grip on the pavement.
As the adage goes, nothing lasts forever. Car owners still need to replace their tires a few times or more throughout the life of a typical vehicle. Despite advances in longer-lasting tires, actual tread life will vary by car type, tire type (such as all season or high performance), driving aggressiveness, and even road and weather conditions. Proper maintenance and responsible driving can maximize the mileage in a set of tires.
We offer these services to help you prolong the life of your tires.
Wheel alignment (or simply alignment) is standard car maintenance that involves adjusting the angles of the wheels so that they are set to the manufacturer's specifications. The main purpose is to let the suspension and the steering systems operate at their desired angles - this reduces tire wear. Alignment is a complicated process and not all mechanics get it right. To have experts handle your car's alignment, visit Hitchcock Automotive Repair.
If you feel excessive vibration in the car, or wobbling of the steering wheel, your tires may be unbalanced. Hitchcock Automotive Repair has the professional equipment and technicians to measure the balance of your vehicle's tires and make necessary corrections. Call us at 941-306-1000 if you have questions, or contact us so we can evaluate your tires.
An incorrectly repaired tire could pose a safety hazard to you and your passengers. At Hitchcock Automotive Repair, our tire experts will determine whether your tires are able to be repaired, or if they need to be replaced. If the tires are repairable, our certified technicians will make sure they are repaired correctly and get you back on the road.
It is recommended that tires, including the spare, be periodically inspected by a tire service professional during routine maintenance intervals such as oil changes and tire rotations. We will inspect the tire tread and sidewalls for irregular tread wear, cracking, scrapes, bulges, cuts, snags, foreign objects or other damage resulting from use. We will remove any stones, glass, foreign objects, etc. embedded in the tread to prevent further damage. Even minor damage can lead to further injury and eventual tire failure. Tires with excessive cracking on the tread or sidewall(s) should be removed from service. This is typically caused by under inflation, over loading, improper storage, and/or improper long-term parking.
Tire rotation is the practice of moving the wheels and tires of an automobile from one position to another, to ensure even tire wear, which extends the useful life of a set of tires. Rotation is important because each tire on a car carries a different amount of weight, making them wear at different rates. By rotating them, you basically even out those differences. Your owner's manual will tell you how often to rotate your tires, but as a rule of thumb, it should be done every 5,000 to 8,000 miles.
These are a few of our preferred brands.
Tires Questions and Answers
Q: Is it okay to mix tire brands on a car?A: Sometimes mixing brands and models on your car is unavoidable, but having a complete matching set is best. If possible, use the same tire on the front or rear wheels. While it's not usually advised, you can mix different tire brands on the same car, if you follow a few simple guidelines. Those include: never mix winter tires with all-season or summer tires; and to not mix run-flat tires with non-run-flat tires. For guidelines in the Sarasota area, give us a call at 941-306-1000.
Q: What are the advantages to rotating my tires?A: Get your tires rotated and get an even amount of tread wear on your tires. Evenly worn tires contribute to a smooth and comfortable ride. Rotating your tires consistently can also extend the life of your tires. It can enhance safety by helping to prevent pulling and an uneven grip between the tire and the pavement.
Q: At what mileage interval should I rotate my tires?A: Experts recommend you rotate your tires every 5,000 to 7,500 miles. While this is a good rule of thumb, your vehicle's exact interval will depend on its drivetrain and your driving habits. More aggressive drivers in the Sarasota area may need to rotate their tires more often. Our experts at Hitchcock Automotive Repair can work with you to determine the tire rotation schedule that will work best.
Q: Does my tire warranty influence my rotation schedule?A: Tire manufacturers know that tire rotation is important for even tread wear. Tire mileage warranties are most often set by the manufacturers with tire rotations included. Failing to rotate your tires may void your tires manufacture warranty.
Q: How does snow tire usage influence rotation decisions?A: If you have snow tires check your tire pressure and rotate your winter tires on a regular schedule. Rotating snow and winter tires is important to maintaining even treadwear and preserving maximum traction in icy conditions.
Q: What throws tires out of balance?A: If you hit a curb or pothole your wheel-tire assembly can get out of balance. Everyday wear on tires and wheels can also cause an imbalance. Many experts recommended that you get your tires balanced every 5,000 to 7,500 miles or every 2 years. If you buy a new set of tires, you may find that tire balancing is included in your purchase. At Hitchcock Automotive Repair, we can check your tire balance and make any necessary adjustments for you.
Q: How do you check tire pressure?A: First, remove the cap from the air valve on the tire and put it somewhere you won't lose it. Press the tire gauge against the open valve stem for a second or two. Next, read the air pressure gauge. Compare the number on the gage with the recommended tire pressure from your cars owner's manual or the sticker that should be next to the driver's side door opening. Finally, replace the tire's air valve cap.
Q: How do you check tire tread depth?A: Check all of your tires in multiple locations by inserting a penny into the tread groove on your tire with Lincoln's head facing toward you and the top of his head touching the tire. If you can see all of Lincoln's head, your tires are worn out and you need new tires. Of course, you can bring your vehicle to Hitchcock Automotive Repair in Sarasota and our experts can check it for you.
Great experience. Scott was upfront about needed repairs and maintenance, and didn't try to do anything without my authorization. Also, there was no high pressure to do anything immediately like some shops will try. There is a nice, clean, comfortable waiting area with free wi-fi, and he also has loaner cars available if you don't want to or are unable wait around. I have to drive 20 miles to get to this shop, but it's worth it for an honest mechanic.
I had a great experience at Hitchcock Automotive. They were able to get me in right before the Holidays when everywhere else was busy or was not able to do the service that my car needed. I would highly recommend them to anybody looking for a good place to have work done on their car. Friendly staff and quick service.
Traveling to Sarasota for vacation and brakes were making unusual noise and felt that it should be checked out. Read reviews prior to selection and called and spoke with owner , Scott , who directed me to come in anytime. Upon arrival I was greeted by a very courteous and welcoming owner that listened to my issues and had a tech on it and out for a test ride and on a lift and checked out quickly. Results were nothing to worry about and normal for some vehicles from north with little rusting that can cause some noise or rubbing that will go away and does not harm brakes and that mine were in excellent condition. When I offered my credit card for payment Scott informed me there was no charge as they had done no work!! I have already offered his name to some friends that spend winters here for their auto servicing needs.