Why Are My Tires Wearing out Faster Than Normal?

By Tara Baukus MelloBankrate.com

Dear Driving for Dollars, 

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I bought a new car a while back, and it now has 102,000 miles. The problem is that the tires have always worn out a lot faster than normal. I keep asking the dealer for a fix, and they keep telling me they don't know of a problem. Why would my tires wear out faster than normal if there isn't a problem? 

-- Dan

Dear Dan, Chances are your perception of what is a normal life span of a tire is different from the expected life span of the tires for this car. Frequently, automakers choose tires made from a softer rubber compound as a way to improve the ride, but the trade-off is that these tires wear out faster than tires made from harder compounds. Look at the mileage rating, sometimes called the tread-life warranty, for your tires to see the expected life span of the tire. If you are getting less than that, then you should get a refund on your purchase that is prorated based on the number of miles you drove on the tires.

If you are convinced that there is a problem, you can file a complaint about a potential defect on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website. Keep in mind that the life span of a tire can be severely shortened due to improper car or tire maintenance, including driving for extended periods with tires with low pressure or in a car that is out of alignment.

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