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Moving wheels around

Passion, instruction, buying, care, maintenance and more, any form of vehicle discussion is welcome here
jfgw
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Re: Moving wheels around

#659583

Postby jfgw » April 14th, 2024, 9:14 pm

There are quite a few Google results and the ones I have looked at all suggest rotating the tyres. For example, https://www.michelin.co.uk/auto/advice/tyre-care/tyre-rotation. I haven't bothered doing it myself for years.

If you don't rotate them and end up with uneven wear (or if you replace just two), the tyres with the most tread should go on the back — there is less chance of pirouetting when slamming the brakes on in the wet. Obviously, your options are limited if you have different sizes front and back.

Punctures are very rare these days, I went for years without having one. Then, this year, I had two about six weeks apart. (Head torches are a great idea, I recommend that you carry one.) I would not want to be without a spare. If I take out my space-saver and a bit of black polystyrene, I can carry a full-size spare.

Even in relatively flat Essex, phoning the AA can involve walking a mile or two to somewhere with a mobile phone signal. I certainly wouldn't want to be in the hillier or more remote parts of the UK without a spare.

From the RAC website,
In 2018 our patrols dealt with almost 200,000 ‘puncture no spare’ breakdowns – an increase of 84% on 2012.
https://www.rac.co.uk/drive/news/rac-news/how-the-rac-universal-spare-wheel-fixes-no-spare-breakdowns/


Julian F. G. W.

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Re: Moving wheels around

#659597

Postby Lanark » April 15th, 2024, 12:47 am

With 8 million RAC customers that means there is on average one flat tyre every 40 years of motoring.
Modern tyres very rarely blow out completely, you can usually limp to a garage.

The cost saving in petrol due to less weight from the spare + jack is very roughly about £20 per year if you do 10,000 miles/year.
So over 40 years thats £800, plus all the spare wheels/tyres you don't have to buy.

One thing I do always carry is a proper tyre pump, with a slow puncture that will often get you a few miles. I think its a nice middle ground between having the full spare wheel kit and having nothing.

jfgw
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Re: Moving wheels around

#659614

Postby jfgw » April 15th, 2024, 9:06 am

Lanark wrote:With 8 million RAC customers that means there is on average one flat tyre every 40 years of motoring.


That only includes the "puncture, no spare" incidents that the RAC are called out to. It does not include any of the punctures that I have had (a lot more than one every 40 years) as I did not call the RAC for any of them and, in any case, I have a spare. It does not include drivers who fix their own with a can of foam. Depending upon the RAC policy, they may not attend if the puncture is discovered while at home, which will include a lot of slow punctures.

My most recent puncture was just before a roundabout. By the time I had driven slowly to somewhere I could pull over, one side-wall was done for. A pump or a can of foam would not have helped.

I carry a spare.


Julian F. G. W.

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Re: Moving wheels around

#659615

Postby Nemo » April 15th, 2024, 9:06 am

i have a Q5 that did not have a spare. I purchased one and had to have the boot refitted to take it as well. Best part of £1,000 as far as I can remember.

I usually keep my cars for quite a while so I thought that it would be worth it.

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Re: Moving wheels around

#659619

Postby bungeejumper » April 15th, 2024, 9:38 am

jfgw wrote:My most recent puncture was just before a roundabout. By the time I had driven slowly to somewhere I could pull over, one side-wall was done for. A pump or a can of foam would not have helped.

Indeed. Apart from run-flats, there are not many cars that could manage more than a mile or so without the tyre wall starting to collapse and the wheel rim striking sparks off the road surface. The police have their own views about people who do that, and so do the magistrates. :|

Foot pumps and (snigger!) 12 volt plug-in pumps won't have a prayer if your tyre's rim has started to loosen its fit against the wheel rim. Here's what it takes to solve that one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VXW7Z8V7qm0

BJ

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Re: Moving wheels around

#659673

Postby 9873210 » April 15th, 2024, 2:12 pm

bungeejumper wrote:Foot pumps and (snigger!) 12 volt plug-in pumps won't have a prayer if your tyre's rim has started to loosen its fit against the wheel rim. Here's what it takes to solve that one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VXW7Z8V7qm0

BJ

That's one way. I expect saner people carry a tube.

bungeejumper
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Re: Moving wheels around

#659675

Postby bungeejumper » April 15th, 2024, 2:29 pm

9873210 wrote:
bungeejumper wrote:Here's what it takes to solve that one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VXW7Z8V7qm0

That's one way. I expect saner people carry a tube.

And a set of tyre levers, and all the gubbins to get the tubeless valve out of the hole in the rim, and then tidy up all the grit and stuff.

Not to mention, more patience than I'd have. I once fitted a new tube onto a motorbike wheel with the tyre still on the rim, and it took me two days and an awful lot of swearing. (It's perishingly easy to get the tube twisted, and then it gets nipped somewhere and you wish you'd never bothered.) Even a wheelbarrow wheel took me two hours. :lol: Would have been less sweat to shell out twelve quid on a new wheel, tube and tyre already fitted. Oh well, you live and learn....

BJ

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Re: Moving wheels around

#659705

Postby Lootman » April 15th, 2024, 4:45 pm

jfgw wrote:
Lanark wrote:With 8 million RAC customers that means there is on average one flat tyre every 40 years of motoring.

That only includes the "puncture, no spare" incidents that the RAC are called out to. It does not include any of the punctures that I have had (a lot more than one every 40 years) as I did not call the RAC for any of them and, in any case, I have a spare. It does not include drivers who fix their own with a can of foam. Depending upon the RAC policy, they may not attend if the puncture is discovered while at home, which will include a lot of slow punctures.

Agreed. I get a flat about once every 5 years (2 cars, 2 drivers). Mostly I fix them myself so they are unreported. I have called for help a couple of times, once when my spare was also flat and once when I considered the location too dangerous to work roadside.

The trivial fuel cost of carrying a spare and a decent jack is not a factor for me.

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Re: Moving wheels around

#659743

Postby genou » April 15th, 2024, 8:11 pm

Lootman wrote:
jfgw wrote:That only includes the "puncture, no spare" incidents that the RAC are called out to. It does not include any of the punctures that I have had (a lot more than one every 40 years) as I did not call the RAC for any of them and, in any case, I have a spare. It does not include drivers who fix their own with a can of foam. Depending upon the RAC policy, they may not attend if the puncture is discovered while at home, which will include a lot of slow punctures.

Agreed. I get a flat about once every 5 years (2 cars, 2 drivers). Mostly I fix them myself so they are unreported. I have called for help a couple of times, once when my spare was also flat and once when I considered the location too dangerous to work roadside.

The trivial fuel cost of carrying a spare and a decent jack is not a factor for me.


In 50 years of driving I have had the princely sum of 1 puncture. That was in my last car which had a skinny - had to buy a new tyre on Skye. Which was not cheap. When it happened I'd have done over 40 years with no puncture at all.

Wet finger in the air 400k miles. I now have a can of slime, which I trust I'll never use.

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Re: Moving wheels around

#659842

Postby jaizan » April 16th, 2024, 1:49 pm

On your typical front wheel drive car, the tyres on the front wear out much faster than the rear. If you do a low annual mileage, the tyres on the rear might deteriorate beyond use before they wear out. So swapping them around can avoid that problem.

I actually had some Continental tyres develop cracks on the sidewall on the rear of my previous car. I think this was something of a quality problem, as they were only about 3 years old & I now avoid the brand.

However, having to scrap them was rather annoying, as I hadn't had much wear out of them. Had they spent half the time on the front axle, I would have at least got more out of them.

I now tend to swap wheels and tyres around once per year, if I remember.


As for spare tyres, I've had 3 punctures in 40 years of driving. In all 3 cases, slime would not have fixed it. So I spent about 10 minutes fitting the spare and continued my journey. I have been avoiding purchasing cars with no space for a spare tyre.

bruncher
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Re: Moving wheels around

#667475

Postby bruncher » June 4th, 2024, 6:56 pm

Watis wrote:Bear in mind that many tyres sold today are only designed to rotate one way, so if they were to be switched they should only be switched front to back on the same side and not using the traditional five wheel swapping pattern - which involved the spare being brought into service too.

Watis


I'm confused about this. Using a four-wheel swapping pattern, wouldn't the tyres rotate the same way, even if they were swapped front to back diagonally?

I think the main reason for doing the rotation for city drivers, is that tyres get worn on one side by driving over interminable pillow-style humps.

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Re: Moving wheels around

#667477

Postby Watis » June 4th, 2024, 7:07 pm

bruncher wrote:
Watis wrote:Bear in mind that many tyres sold today are only designed to rotate one way, so if they were to be switched they should only be switched front to back on the same side and not using the traditional five wheel swapping pattern - which involved the spare being brought into service too.

Watis


I'm confused about this. Using a four-wheel swapping pattern, wouldn't the tyres rotate the same way, even if they were swapped front to back diagonally?

I think the main reason for doing the rotation for city drivers, is that tyres get worn on one side by driving over interminable pillow-style humps.


No, the wheels are turned through 180 degrees when swapped from side to side so will rotate in the opposite direction. Test it with a coin or a bagel or something if you're struggling to visualise it.

Watis

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Re: Moving wheels around

#667560

Postby redsturgeon » June 5th, 2024, 7:50 am

I have lost count of the number of punctures I have had over the years but it depends what you are counting as a punctures. About once every couple of years I have a slow puncture from a nail or similar. About half the time these are fixable but otherwise its a new tyre required, once after only two months from new. Also had recurring problems with Mrs RS's car that turned out to be a leaky alloy wheel.

Only two instant deflations I can recall though, one from a pothole and another from a very sharp kerb that I was attempting to mount and misjudged the speed.

Never had any success with sealant and purchased a space saver spare for our present carthat has saved us once already in the four years since we bought it. Annoyingly it does take up valuable boot space though.

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Re: Moving wheels around

#667640

Postby bruncher » June 5th, 2024, 2:48 pm

Watis wrote:
bruncher wrote:
I'm confused about this. Using a four-wheel swapping pattern, wouldn't the tyres rotate the same way, even if they were swapped front to back diagonally?

I think the main reason for doing the rotation for city drivers, is that tyres get worn on one side by driving over interminable pillow-style humps.


No, the wheels are turned through 180 degrees when swapped from side to side so will rotate in the opposite direction. Test it with a coin or a bagel or something if you're struggling to visualise it.

Watis


So the tyres would need to be removed from the wheels to effectuate a diagonal swap?

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Re: Moving wheels around

#667642

Postby BigB » June 5th, 2024, 3:06 pm

"So the tyres would need to be removed from the wheels to effectuate a diagonal swap?"

If you really want diagonal (front to back, and side to side) - then yes, as it's the side to side that switches the direction of rotation.

I switched a set of tyres front to back about 18 months ago to even out the wear on a third worn set of tyres, but I'll confess I never actually verified they put them back on the correct sides........

Edit: verified!

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Re: Moving wheels around

#667644

Postby kiloran » June 5th, 2024, 3:13 pm

BigB wrote:"So the tyres would need to be removed from the wheels to effectuate a diagonal swap?"

If you really want diagonal (front to back, and side to side) - then yes, as it's the side to side that switches the direction of rotation.

I switched a set of tyres front to back about 18 months ago to even out the wear on a third worn set of tyres, but I'll confess I never actually verified they put them back on the correct sides........

That's always been my understanding, but I've been thinking back to the days when I had a full-size spare. I suspect when I put the spare on to replace a puncture, I never considered the rotational direction, and just put the repaired tyre in the boot as the spare, so ran around for months/years with a tyre rotating the wrong way.

--kiloran

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Re: Moving wheels around

#667647

Postby bungeejumper » June 5th, 2024, 3:36 pm

kiloran wrote:I've been thinking back to the days when I had a full-size spare. I suspect when I put the spare on to replace a puncture, I never considered the rotational direction, and just put the repaired tyre in the boot as the spare, so ran around for months/years with a tyre rotating the wrong way.

I don't think there was a wrong way back in the old days. It became an issue when we started to get directional treads with arrow shaped grooves that sent the rain backwards (which might mean clockwise or anticlockwise, depending on their location). Or which had asymmetric radial grooves.Which, for me, was some time around 2010. :lol:

A French tyre dealer, which happened to be owned by the Michelin group, succeeded in fitting my Michelin front tyres inside out, which I thought was quite an achievement. Although on second thoughts, they did seem to be on a mission to reinstate the Hundred Years' War with the [i]rosbifs[/i]: the fitter kept us waiting fr two hours, and then clocked off and drove straight home with my locking wheelnut key in his pocket. :evil:

By the time I found out that my inners were outside and my outers were inside, we were out of time and I had no option but to drive the 650 miles back to Blighty with everything spinning in the wrong direction. I can't say I noticed any handling issues, though it might have been different in very bad rain. :?

BJ

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Re: Moving wheels around

#667650

Postby tjh290633 » June 5th, 2024, 3:52 pm

bruncher wrote:
Watis wrote:
No, the wheels are turned through 180 degrees when swapped from side to side so will rotate in the opposite direction. Test it with a coin or a bagel or something if you're struggling to visualise it.

Watis


So the tyres would need to be removed from the wheels to effectuate a diagonal swap?

If you look at your tyres, they have instructions moulded in about which is the outside and the direction of rotation. Left side and right side are mirror images. They can only be fitted on the correct side, so only front to rear is a feasible swap.

TJH

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Re: Moving wheels around

#667668

Postby DrFfybes » June 5th, 2024, 5:12 pm

bruncher wrote:
Watis wrote:
No, the wheels are turned through 180 degrees when swapped from side to side so will rotate in the opposite direction. Test it with a coin or a bagel or something if you're struggling to visualise it.

Watis


So the tyres would need to be removed from the wheels to effectuate a diagonal swap?


Yes you could, but in IMO it is rarely worth bothering about. Tyres wear on different axles due to one being driven and one coasting. The side to side wear difference is minimal, unless you live in Milton Keynes and spend your days on roundabouts. Running slightly under pressure will make much more of a difference to tyre wear than which side of the vehicle it is on.

I ordered tyres for the Avensis yesterday, I could measure no difference between the right and left fronts, there was a marginal difference on the rear but that was because I got a front puncture after 2000 miles and had one replaced so swapped back to front.


I don't routinely rotate them but come new tyre time I put the new ones on the rear and move the older ones to the front. Some say there is a benefit in having more tread on the rear, but for me it is more own to having several vehicles and avoiding discovering that they're 7 years old and starting to crack. I had to use the spare in the Carina a couple of years ago. It looked fine, but I drove carefully as it was the original from 1990 and had never been used.I replaced a pair and kept the unpunctured one as the spare.

TJH wrote:If you look at your tyres, they have instructions moulded in about which is the outside and the direction of rotation. Left side and right side are mirror images. They can only be fitted on the correct side, so only front to rear is a feasible swap.


Some (most?) directional tyres do not have an inside and an outside. Otherwise you'd need to specify whether you wanted left or right when you ordered them. Tyres with an 'in/outside' ("Asymmetric tyres") are generally not directional.

Paul

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Re: Moving wheels around

#668023

Postby richlist » June 8th, 2024, 5:39 pm

Some cars have different size wheels front and back (e.g. Merc SL) and are directional so cannot be swapped. The spare wheel has to be a space saver so it fits front or back.

I bought a 20 inch spare wheel & tyre, jack, wheel nut spanner & wheel cover all for £150 for a Range Rover that only came with a spray foam repair kit. It was worth every penny for peace of mind.


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