"Despite the risk posed by poorly maintained tires, too many motorists are neglecting tire care," says John Nielsen, director of AAA's Approved Auto Repair Program. "Taking five minutes each month to check and adjust tire pressure can enhance safety, improve fuel economy and help tires last longer."
In the poll, which was conducted by the Rubber Manufacturers Association, only 34 percent of respondents said they know how to tell if their tires are bald. The survey also found that motorists lack knowledge of proper tire placement. Four out of five drivers do not know the proper mounting position when replacing two bald tires with two new tires.
"When it comes time to replace tires, the best course of action is to replace all four at the same time using quality tires of the vehicle manufacturer's recommended size," says Dan Zielinski, RMA vice president.
However, if you replace only two tires, Zielinski recommends that they be installed on the rear axle to ensure maximum vehicle stability.
Those who need some help staying on track with vehicle maintenance can sign up for the AAA AutoManager feature on www.AAA.com. This free application sends users regular e-mail reminders indicating when their vehicles are due for recommended maintenance. It also provides tools to help diagnose vehicle problems and locate nearby AAA Approved Auto Repair shops.
Additional information on tire safety may be found on the RMA's Web site at www.betiresmart.org and on the NHTSA's Web site at www.safercar.gov.