Author - hessamaldin

tire with a lower tire load index

Can you use a tire with a lower tire load

index than the original manufacture tires??

When you’re shopping for summer tires, there’s more to think about than just size. It’s critical that the load index conforms to your original equipment (OE) specifications too.

Let’s say out of the thousands of tires you can choose from these days, you find a tire you’d like to buy, but it has a smaller load index than your OE specifications.

Can you use a tire with a lower tire load index than the original manufacture tires? The shorter answer is no.

Here’s the reason why.

Why you can’t use a tire with a lower load index than the OE specifications

The engineers who designed your vehicle figured out exactly how much your vehicle could safely carry based on the right tire size and pressure. That amount is a called a tire load index.

A tire load index tells you how much weight a tire can carry at its maximum air pressure. If you take a look at our load index table, you’ll see a load index of 91, for example, translates to a safe carrying capacity of 1,356 pounds or 615 kilograms.

If you’re thinking about up-sizing, you can switch to a tire with a higher load index, because that means your tire will safely be able to carry more weight. But you can never go down.

A tire with a lower load index than your OE specifications can’t properly support the weight of your vehicle and its load (you and your things).

What happens when you use a tire with a lower load index than the OE specifications

When you overload a tire, you can really stress its casing and construction, particularly when combined with driving on hot summer roads. In fact, you could be risking a blowout.

That’s why the Rubber Association of Canada’s guidelines state new tires should never be downgraded in load rating from the tires placed on a vehicle by the car manufacturer.

How to make sure your new tires have the right load index

You should be able to find your manufacturer’s OE specs in your manual or on your door placard, where you’ll see the recommended tire size, load rating and tire pressure

Studded Snow Tires or Regular Winter Tires

In some areas of the country, snow tires are mandatory due to extreme weather. In others, snow tires are only recommended. And still in other, the weather gives drivers no reason for winter tires. Whether you are on vacation or moving to a new climate, let’s look at laws around the nation when it comes to studded tires, and the differences between the two types of tires.

Snow Tires vs. Studded Tires

First, it’s important to note that if you are going to drive in the snow, you want snow tires. Snow tires have different tread designs from all-weather tires, meant to grip the road better and handle ice and slush. They also have a different type of rubber for the same reasons. We highly recommend using snow or studded tires in icy or snowy conditions.

Studded Snow Tires Pros and Cons

The drawback for increased traction? Studded tires are noisy and do more damage to the road surface. If you can handle the clicking of the studs, especially on areas where snow has been cleared, they provide a better ride.

The main reason some states restrict studded tires is that they tear up roads, meaning more work maintaining and repairing roads. While this may not concern you, your own driveway and garage might.

Nokian’s Hakkapeliitta line of tires, however, aim to reduce noise and damage. While stud less tires have long held these advantages over studded tires, studded tires are starting to catch up.

In most cases, noise and damage are a con for studded tires, but a pro for snow tires. Snow tires do not damage while still allowing you to drive in snow conditions or on ice patches.

As a pro for studded tires, they stop sooner on ice. In mountainous regions with less direct sun, or in coastal regions and near rivers where fog turns to ice on the road, studded tires edge out snow tires. If you are not facing icy roads, just icy patches, or densely packed snow, however, you may only need snow tires.

How to get the most out of your car battery

A dead battery can be a big problem. Don’t find yourself stranded.

Day to Day Car Battery Care

When using a battery, it’s important to make sure you check it regularly for signs of corrosion or other warning signs of a bad battery.

Warning signs include:

  • Corroded battery posts

  • Vehicle is hard or slow to crank (start)

  • Heat radiating from an unused, or recently not-used, battery

  • Warping or bloating from overheating (whether internal or from hot summer weather)

By keeping an eye out for these warning signs, you can make sure to notice any problems before they start. That way you can avoid a dead battery and being stuck somewhere with a car that won’t start.

If you already have a dead or dying battery, driving it around and having the alternator charge it won’t work too well. A vehicle’s alternator is too busy running all the electronics in the vehicle to worry about charging the dying battery.

According to Interstate Batteries, a manufacturer of car batteries, it would take 2,000 miles of driving more than 70 mph to charge a dead 12-volt battery. That’s without headlights, AC, or even the radio.

Keep your battery ready for winter and summer

Extreme temperatures, whether low or high, can be damaging and can drain car batteries. In the winter, car batteries can be slow to turn over because freezing weather slows the chemical reaction within the battery that creates charge. On the other hand, heat can deteriorate the internal components and lead to premature corrosion, causing a weak charge. You can lessen the impact of severe weather by keeping your vehicle store in a protected area like a garage or covered parking space.

Checking car battery life

One of the ways to make sure your battery still has life is to check it regularly. The first check is to see if there are any visual defects or issues with the battery. It’s a good idea to perform these checks before the first severe cold snap of the season, and before the heat of the summer sets in.

  • Make sure the connections are tight, and the battery isn’t loose in its cradle
  • Ensure battery cables are not corroded, frayed, or broken. Change them if they’re damaged.
  • If the posts are corroded, unhook the battery cables and clean the terminals and posts with a wooden-handled brush
  • If the battery is bloated, do not use the battery as the chemicals inside are acidic and corrosive

Remember to always disconnect the battery if you’re going to be messing with the posts. The last thing you want is to send an electrical surge into your car’s delicate electric system.

Other tips

Keeping jumper cables on hand and a portable battery jumper (also called a battery booster) in the trunk can also save drivers from being stranded. These items are more affordable than you might think and can come in handy.

Top TPMS Troubleshooting Tips

When dealing with TPMS, here are a few best practices and reminders to ensure you’re taking care of your customers and avoiding possible comebacks.

Are there codes?

If you are having problems with a relearn procedure or the TPMS light won’t go out after a test drive, look to see if the check-engine light is on or if there are any codes related to the modules that communicate with the TPMS system. If there are any codes for loss of communication, serial data buses errors or low voltage, it could be an indication that there are other problems with one or more of the serial data buses. Most TPMS light might go through an ABS, keyless entry, or other modules that act as a gateway.

Check the Parking Brake

For some relearn procedures it is essential that the parking brake is functioning. If the parking brake is not turning on the brake light in the instrument cluster, the procedure can’t be started or will be aborted. You will have to diagnose this problem first.

Check the Brake Pedal Switch

On some vehicles, it is essential that the brake pedal is depressed three or more times along with turning the ignition on and off in a set sequence. If the brake pedal switch is not working, the relearn procedure can’t be initiated.

Three volts short

Some vehicles require the key fob to start a relearn procedure because the TPMS system shares the same antenna and module as the keyless entry system. It is not uncommon for the customer to give a shop a weak or dead remote. Some dedicated TPMS tools can diagnose the fob by measuring the signal output. To prevent a dead remote from stopping a relearn procedure, try stocking a variety of three-volt coin-style batteries. Three part numbers can cover 90% of the vehicles on the road. The customer will be more than happy to pay for the battery replacement.

Get to know your tool

If you have some downtime, spend some time getting to know your TPMS tool and the operator’s manual. Some advanced TPMS tool has some remarkable feature that can be missed if you are not looking. Some tools have special functions to test keyless remotes, pull OBDII codes and even guide training.

Update your TPMS tool

Whenever an update is available for your TPMS tool, do it. Updates contain more than just the latest coverage for the newest car models. Most updates fill in coverage of older vehicles, programming protocols for the latest programmable sensors and fixes for existing software bugs. Delaying the updating of your tool can cost you more time than the update procedure takes.

Don’t forget the spare

A spare tire typically remains forgotten, mounted to the frame or in the trunk, but for some TPMS systems, it’s a crucial factor in recalibration. If you don’t activate the sensor in the spare tire, the system will give a false read. Alternatively, an active sensor in the spare tire will be recognized by the vehicle, so it may be the source of the warning light as well. Always check the spare tire when servicing TPMS.

Replace Sensors as a Set

If a single sensor has reached the end of its lifespan, it is highly recommended to replace all sensors at the same time. Similar to headlights, once one sensor dies, the rest are likely to be close behind. The same is true for a corroded valve stem or other non-impact sensor replacement. This is an important point for your customer to understand. Taking care of it before there is a problem also is a convenience to them.

Look Up the Sensor Specs

Typical torque values for the base nuts on a TPMS valve stem range from as low as 35 in lbs. of torque to as much as 80 in lbs. of torque. That’s quite a range. This doesn’t mean that any torque value within this range is acceptable. It means that the torque specifications for the base nut on one vehicle might require 44 in lbs., another might require exactly 62 in lbs., yet another might specify exactly 71 in lbs., and so on. Don’t guess. Look up the torque specifications for the vehicle you’re servicing to make sure you use the correct torque. Most replacement sensors will include the specifications printed on the box of a slip of paper inside the box.

Tyre Indonesia 2018

The 7th Indonesia International Tyre, Rubber and Wheel Exhibition 2018

22-24 March 2018

Jakarta, Indonesia

The total size of Indonesia’s rubber plantation area has risen steadily during the last decade. In 2016, Indonesia rubber plantations covered a total of 3.65 million hectares. As the second largest rubber producer in the world, Indonesia’s supply of rubber is very important for the global market.

The tyre market in Indonesia is forecasted to grow at a CAGR of over 13% during 2015-2020. Major factors that are expected to boost Indonesia’s tyre industry include abundant raw material availability, continuing government support, and growing domestic automotive industry. Furthermore, domestic tire sales are highly dependent on the nation’s car and motorcycle sales. Indonesia’s vehicle sales are reaching 1.1 million units in 2017, growing at a rate of 5 percent and riding strong domestic consumption.

This industry will be stronger with raised S&P Global Ratings for Indonesia’s rating to “investment grade,” bringing Indonesia as a stable country with decent investment. It is boosting growth and demand from all rising industrial sectors including automotive industries. Thus, it increases the requirements for tyre industries.

The success of Tyre & Rubber Indonesia 2017 which was co-located with INAPA 2017, IIBT 2017, and INABIKE 2017 attracted 1,002 companies represented from 24 countries across the different sectors of the show with 23.168 attendees from over 40 countries in 4 days. The Expo has further proved as Indonesia’s Most Comprehensive Trade Show for tyre and rubber industry.

Square Meter Event Area

For more information:

Winter tires for a safe winter trip

Winter tires are one of best ways to make sure your family gets where you want to go safely. Combine a reliable set of tires with tips on staying safe, and your cross-country winter trip will be full of cheer, not fear of the ice and snow.

No one can blame you for wondering whether buying an extra tire set is really necessary. As winter sets in and predictions of snow and ice are put to the test, it’s tough to gauge whether winter tires are worth it. Winter road conditions are highly variable and some sections of the country can go an entire season without seeing a flake.

But when it comes down to it, your family’s safety is at stake. Each year, 116,800 people are injured and 1,300 people die due to accidents caused by winter weather. Even if this winter’s weather isn’t deadly, next year’s could be. Having a set of the best winter tires available to throw on when the roads get rough will help ensure both peace of mind and safety for you and your family.

Yet, when the holidays are approaching, money can be in short supply. If that’s the case, you can look into financing options. That way, the tires will be there now in the event of a harsh winter storm, and you can finish paying for them after the holiday season when funds are a little less tight.

What are the best winter tires?

When you’re faced with the onset of harsh winter conditions, analyze your options. Besides winter tires, there are also all-weather tires and all-season tires.

All-weather vs all-season tires: You’re probably familiar with the winter tires vs. all-season tires debate. But did you know there’s such things as all-weather tires too? You’re thinking, “Great, another option, that’s all I need!” To narrow it down and figure out what’s going on here, let’s go to a place where harsh winters are the norm.

Canada is the Great White North, a land where icy and snowy conditions prevail every winter. “Canadians are generally well versed in the differences between all-season and winter tires,” says author Emily Chung, in an article for the aptly named website Driving. She continues, “From my experience, few Canadians are aware that all-weather tires exist, or understand how they differ from all-season tires.”

When it comes to all-weather vs all-season tires, Chung reveals the following:

  • All-weather tires are a cross between all-season and winter tires, with a hybrid tread pattern
  • All-weather tires perform better than all-season tires during the winter, with a faster stopping-time in wet conditions
  • All-seasons last longer than all-weather tires year-round, because they’re made with firmer rubber

So, all-weather tires generally perform better than all-season tires during the winter (and summer, actually, because they’re better in wet conditions all-around), but there is a downside: all-weather tires have a shorter tread-life than all-season tires. All-weather tread-life does continue to get better as the technology progresses.

All in all, the best winter tire for extreme conditions is a dedicated winter tire. In a study from Canada’s Kal Tire, a car with winter tires stopped nearly 49 feet sooner than the same car equipped with all-season tires.

Do you need winter tires?

The answer is yes, because you never know when a severe blizzard or record-breaking cold temperatures will hit. Make sure you know winter driving techniques to get the best out of your tires.

What are the best winter driving techniques?

Even if you have great winter tires, you’ll still want to be prepared for driving in ice and snow. There are a lot of things to consider. You never know what other drivers are going to do. Both AAA and Cartalk off essential tips. Here’s what you need to know to get where you need to go in the snow.

  • Take it easy: Drive as slowly as you can, within reason; give yourself plenty of time to accelerate and plenty of time to stop
  • Increase following distance: Stay 8-10 seconds behind the car in front of you
  • Avoid stopping when possible: The less stopping you do in snow, the less likely you are to get stuck; try cruising at the lowest possible speed until you absolutely must stop
  • Don’t go full throttle up hills, and don’t stop on them: Go slow and steady up hills so you don’t get stuck on them
  • Put a bag of sand between rear axles: If you’re driving a rear-wheel drive are, a little weight in the back (20 pounds) will help with traction; don’t weight it down too much, or the front tires won’t be able to do their job
  • Don’ drive: You probably don’t need to be told twice to stay home from work when conditions are too severe

Also, always make sure to remove snow and ice from your car before driving. Make sure maintenance is up to date.

What to expect at Tire Technology Expo 2018

The 2018 Tire Technology Expo is the world’s premier tire technology showcase, with nearly 300 stands exhibiting equipment and materials that cover the complete spectrum of the manufacturing process. Running in conjunction with the expo is the conference, which features an amazing line up of speakers and presentations. A spokesperson for organisers UKi Media & Events told us why tire dealers should attend.


This will be Tire Technology Expo’s third visit to the city of Hannover and is a bigger event than 2017 with nearly 300 exhibitors. Not only will you be able to see the latest technology for tire research, development and manufacturing, you’ll also be able to enjoy valuable one-on-one time with exhibitors and presenters. In addition, the event plays host to the annual three-day conference, with a line-up of 180 expert speakers from across the globe.


The size of this year’s event is a result of the growth of the chemicals, materials, tire and design section of the show. This suggests an increase in sustainability and recycling R&D, something reflected in the conference papers and presentations. From next generation tires to the vehicles driving them, there’s a focus on the future of the industry and how that needs to be a sustainable one.


The nearly 300 exhibitors are a veritable who’s-who of the industry, with everyone from A&D Europe to ZF Friedrichshafen exhibiting. The event is a truly global one with names including Continental, Dr Gupta Verlag, ERJ, Tyre Asia and Siemens. The show opens at 10am until 4pm daily with the conference running concurrently. Key speakers will include Michelin, Lehigh Technologies, Pro2Act, Zeppelin Systems, Sumitomo Rubber Industries, and ExxonMobil Chemical.


The expo is free of charge and takes place on 21-22 February 2018 at Deutsche Masse, Hannover, Germany. A full exhibitor list can be found here. The conference runs concurrently and there’s currently a 10% discount offer on one, two and three-day passes. A full programme can be found here. And don’t forget the annual Tire Technology International Awards for Innovation and Excellence Gala Dinner is being held on the evening of 21 February.

Wheel Bearing Replacement

Wheel bearings allow your wheels to rotate quickly with as little friction as possible. Over time, your car’s wheel bearings will lose effectiveness and could start to produce loud squeaking noises while you are driving. The wheel bearing damage can become worse, causing vibrations while driving and uneven tyre wear.

When wheel bearings become worn, loose, or noisy, they are sometimes difficult for the driver to diagnose. Many people don’t even realize that their wheel bearings are in need of repair until their mechanic suggests it. However, they play a crucial part in ensuring your vehicle drives smoothly and safely.

If wheel bearings have too much play (become loose) or noisy they will most likely fail a Warrant of Fitness.

Replacing your wheel bearings will extend the life of your tyres as well as remove annoying noises from your tyre area.

Essential Wheel Bearing Info

Wheel bearings are either ball (pictured above) or tapered roller type.  Front wheel bearing applications usually use an angular-type ball bearing because an angular-type ball bearing will accept greater thrust loads than a Conrad-type bearing. A tapered roller bearing will accept both a radial and a thrust load. Some rear axles will have a cartridge-type wheel bearing set containing either ball or tapered roller set.


Basic seal construction remains the same, but the primary sealing materials have changed from felt to rubber products, yet felt is still used as a dust shield for the primary seal. A seal is only as good as the surface it rides on. It is very important that the seal be lubricated before it is installed to prevent it from running dry. If the seal lip runs on a dry surface, it will over heat and become brittle. It is highly recommended that a seal installer be used. The installer will prevent the seal from being cocked when it is installed. A shaft protector should be used when installing a seal over a splined shaft. The dust cap is also a vital part of the sealing system. A little extra care and a brass drift can make the job a lot easier.


Wheel Bearing Adjustment

A wheel bearing out of adjustment can reduce bearing life and can affect more than just the bearing. It affects the operation and service life of the spindle, wheel seal and brake components. It is important to adjust the wheel bearing end play to the proper specifications. If the bearing set is adjusted too loose or too tight, it can cause the bearing to fail prematurely. Bearing adjustment did not become critical to braking performance until the introduction of disc brakes. The caliper is mounted directly to the steering knuckle. If there was too much end play, it would cause piston knock back in the caliper, resulting in excessive pedal travel. The use of direct mount of the caliper is returning to use on high-performance vehicles.


Hub Bearings

In the late 1970s, the hub bearing began to appear on front-wheel-drive vehicles. This was a sealed, lubricated for life, pre-adjusted bearing with a mounting flange attached to the strut knuckle or rear axle flange and a hub for the rotor, wheel and CV joint. Other versions consist of a hub and bearing set that mount on a rear axle spindle or steering knuckle. The bearing could be either ball or roller type. Passenger car and light truck hub bearings are not adjustable.

The hub is directly affected by the condition of the bearing. The driver may first notice a noise coming from the wheel of the vehicle when the steering wheel is turned. There will be noticeable end play when the wheel is unloaded. A check using a dial indicator will show an end play greater than 0.004 inch (0.100mm).  Bearing end play can also affect a wheel speed sensor and cause an intermittent ABS trouble code. If the bearing flange has a runout, that runout will be magnified at the rotor friction surface. A runout of 0.0005 inch (0.00254mm) at the bearing flange could result in a 0.001 inch (0.0025mm) runout at the rotor friction surface.

A wheel bearing is the most critical component of a braking system.  It positions the wheel and rotor to the caliper, the wheel and drum to the backing plate, and controls the input to the wheel speed sensor.  As Electronic Stability Control (ESC) braking systems become more complex, the wheel bearing will still be the central component to the system’s operation. With the introduction of the Electronic Wedge Brake (EWB) just around the corner the caliper, wheel speed sensor and chassis controller will become the ABS system. These changes will require greater care in the servicing of the total suspension system.


Quality Matters

When replacing wheel bearings, it is of the utmost importance to use high quality aftermarket parts. If the aftermarket bearing does not perform as well as the OEM bearings, it can fail prematurely potentially damaging the vehicle. Low quality aftermarket bearings may not fit the application well enough which can cause problems with endplay. This can cause drivability problems which can mean costly comebacks.



To avoid damaging the new bearing, the bearing inner race must be carefully pressed onto a shaft and the outer race pressed into its bore. Hammering a bearing in place can result in the rollers or balls dimpling the bearing races and causing premature failure.

Most bearings have about 0.001” of interference-fit built into an axle shaft or bearing bore, which means that these types of bearings must be pressed or driven into place. Tapered bearing cups or outer races should be driven in place using a special aluminum driver. In an emergency, an old bearing race cut through on one side with an air-powered “whiz wheel” will serve the purpose.

Special tools are also available for pressing bearings into a steering knuckle. Installation of bearings into an aluminum steering knuckle or housing can be expedited by using an electric hot air gun to gradually expand the housing without melting or distorting the metal. Lastly, always adjust a tapered roller bearing by torquing to 15-20 ft.-lbs. and spinning the hub to center the rollers in the races. Back this initial adjustment off an 1/8 or 1/4 turn and retorque the bearing to manufacturers’ specifications. A typical final torque of 20-30 inch-pounds will leave zero end play and a slight amount of preload on the wheel bearing assembly.

Whether installing a ball, roller or sealed bearing assembly, using correct procedures and tools will ensure a comeback-free wheel bearing installation.

Carburetor Repair & Tuning

What is a Carburetor?

Before fuel injectors became common in modern vehicles, carburetors were used to control the flow of fuel and air to the engine. The carburetor mixes fuel and air together, ensuring the ratio is correct. This allows for optimum fuel efficiency and vehicle performance while driving.

Since the carburetor is directly responsible for fuel and air entering the engine, damage to the carburetor can significantly affect the performance of a vehicle’s engine and exhaust system. Fortunately, a failing carburetor will often display several symptoms, alerting the driver that it is in need of a repair.

Symptoms of a Failing Carburetor

Reduced Engine Power

A faulty carburetor will directly affect your engine’s air/fuel ratio, resulting in a reduction in engine performance. You may notice that your car is slow to accelerate. It may also shake when pressure is put on the engine.

Reduced Fuel Economy

Reduced engine performance will often be accompanied by a reduction in fuel economy. When the air/fuel ratio in incorrect, the engine won’t be able to bun fuel as efficiently, resulting in a lot more fuel going to waste.

Lean Fuel Mixture

A malfunctioning carburetor will often produce a lean air/fuel mixture. This means that there is too much air and not enough fuel entering your engine. A lean mixture will often result in misfires, over heating and engine damage over time.

Rich Fuel Mixture

Alternatively, a malfunctioning carburetor can produce a rich fuel mixture. This means that there is too much fuel and not enough air in the engine. If the engine runs too rich, your vehicle will consume more fuel as well as produce more emissions. A key sign of a rich fuel mixture is black smoke coming from your exhaust. This is caused by fuel not burning properly.

Car Not Starting

If the problem becomes severe enough, your vehicle may cease to run altogether. At this point, your carburetor is either severely overdue for a clean or simply damaged.




Fuel Filter Replacement

What does a fuel filter do?

The purpose of a fuel filter is to clean the fuel in your vehicle, removing contaminants and protecting your fuel injectors. A clean fuel filter will allow a constant flow of fuel to your engine that ignites properly. If your fuel filter becomes clogged with dirt or grime, the fuel may be unable to correctly ignite, causing reduced power in your engine.

A blocked fuel filter can also lead to less fuel entering the fuel injection system, and therefore a lean air / fuel mixture (greater than 14.7 to 1). This can cause your engine to misfire, which reduces engine power and increases harmful green-house gas exhaust emissions. It can also cause your engine to run hotter than normal which is not desirable. Having a clean fuel filter will improve the lifespan of your fuel injectors, allowing for better overall power and fuel efficiency.

What are the symptoms of a clogged fuel filter?

Loss of power:
A dirty fuel filter may cause your vehicle to lose power, particularly when driving up hills. Your vehicle requires more fuel when climbing steep terrains, and a fuel system with a clogged filter may not be able to provide the required amount quickly enough. As well as limiting your car’s power, a clogged fuel filter will cause your fuel pump to work a lot harder when driving up hills. This can put strain on the fuel pump, damaging it over time.

Dashboard warnings:
A clogged filter may cause your vehicle’s engine light to turn on. This is due to your engine’s sensors detecting that the fuel/air ratio is incorrect. If your vehicle is displaying a check engine light as well as losing power on hills, you should get your fuel filter examined by a mechanic.

Transmission problems:
A damaged fuel filter may exhibit similar symptoms to a malfunctioning transmission system. Contaminants in your fuel filter may cause your vehicle to struggle with changing gears and accelerating.