tire research

TIRE RESEARCH

Tire Research and Safety Information from Chevrolet Certified Service

Finding new tires has never been this easy

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TIRE OFFERS

Tire offers from Chevrolet Certified Service

Up to $200 on four select tires

in mail-in rebate and statement credit with first purchase on a new BuyPower Card.®

Combined offer ends 11/30/17.

Plus, our tire price match guarantee

Knowing when to replace your tires

Tread wear indicators appear when the tires only have 2/32 inch or less of tread remaining. Rubber in tires ages over time. This also applies to the spare tire (if available), even if it is never used. Multiple factors including temperatures, loading conditions, and inflation pressure maintenance affect how fast tires age.

Other warning signs that your vehicle will need tire replacement:

  • You can see three or more tread wear indicators around the tire
  • The tire cord or fabric is showing through the rubber
  • You can see three or more tread wear indicators around the tire
  • The tire cord or fabric is showing through the rubber
  • The tire tread or sidewall is cracked, cut, or snagged deep enough to show cord or fabric
  • The tire has a bulge or split
  • The tire has a puncture, cut, or other damage that can’t be repaired correctly
  • The tire tread or sidewall is cracked, cut, or snagged deep enough to show cord or fabric
  • The tire has a bulge or split
  • The tire has a puncture, cut, or other damage that can’t be repaired correctly 

Parts of a tire

Understanding proper tire maintenance, selection, and safety for your Chevrolet vehicle starts with knowing the basics: Why are tires important? How do I choose the right set for my Chevrolet vehicle?

 

Tires are a driver's first and only contact with the road, transferring actions such as steering, braking, accelerating, and turning. They are specifically chosen for each vehicle, making tires one of the most important safety features on a car, truck, or crossover.

Tire parts glossary

Tires are made up of many different parts, and it’s important to understand how they work.

Belts

Rubber-coated layers of steel, fiberglass, rayon, and other materials located between the tread and piles, crisscrossing at angles, hold the piles in place. Belts provide resistance to punctures and help treads stay flat and in contact with the road.

Materials and parts of a tire

Sipes

Sipes are special treads within the tread that improve traction on wet, dirty, sandy, or snowy road surfaces.

Materials and parts of a tire

Tread

The portion of the tire that comes in contact with the road.

Materials and parts of a tire

Grooves

The spaces between two adjacent tread ribs are also called tread grooves. These allow water to escape effectively. 

Materials and parts of a tire

Shoulder

The outer edge of the tread that wraps into the sidewall area.

Materials and parts of a tire

Sidewall

The sidewall of the tire protects cord piles and features tire markings and information such as tire size and type.

Materials and parts of a tire

Inner Liner

This is the innermost layer of a tubeless tire that prevents air from penetrating through the tire.

Materials and parts of a tire

Types of tires

Your Chevrolet tires were specifically chosen for your vehicle to handle a variety of driving and weather conditions. This careful attention to detail makes your tires one of the most important safety features on your Chevrolet car, truck, or crossover. Different types of tires can perform better or worse—depending on conditions—so it’s important to understand how they work.

 

Check your Owner’s Manual for information regarding your tire warranty or visit the Certified Service expert technicians near you for more help.

All-Terrain Tire tread pattern

ALL-TERRAIN TIRES

All-terrain tires provide good performance on most road surfaces, in most weather conditions, and for off-road driving. The tread pattern on these tires may wear more quickly than others. Consider rotating these tires more frequently than the recommended 7,500 miles if you notice irregular wear. Check your tire wear here.

Run-Flat Tire tread pattern

RUN-FLAT TIRES

Run-flat tires can be driven on with no air pressure. There is no need to stop to change the tire. Continue driving, but not too far or too fast. Driving on the tire may not be possible if there is permanent damage. To prevent permanent damage, keep speeds below 50 mph.

All-Season Tire Tread Pattern

ALL-SEASON TIRES

All-season tires are for year-round use and feature a blend of technologies that make use of different compounds and detailed tread configurations, designed for most driving conditions such as snow, rain, heat, cold, etc. These tires offer good overall performance on most road surfaces and in most weather conditions.

Performance Tire Tread Pattern

PERFORMANCE TIRES

Performance tires are designed for enhanced handling under demanding circumstances and generally have high-speed ratings with a low aspect ratio for improved control. These tires are not built for winter conditions.

Summer-Only Tire Tread Pattern

SUMMER-ONLY TIRES

Summer tires have a special tread and compound that are optimized for maximum dry- and wet-road performance. This special tread and compound will decrease performance in cold climates and on ice and snow.

 

NOTE: Do not use summer tires in winter conditions, as it would adversely affect vehicle safety, performance, and durability. Use only GM-approved tire and wheel combinations. Unapproved combinations may change the vehicle’s performance. Learn more about important tire and wheel information at your dealer.

Winter Tire and Snow Tire Tread Pattern

SNOW/WINTER TIRES

Winter tires are designed for increased traction on snow- and ice-covered roads. With winter tires, there may be decreased dry-road traction, increased road noise, and shorter tread life. After changing to winter tires, watch for changes in the vehicle’s handling and braking.

 

If you decide to use snow/winter tires:

  • Use tires of the same brand and tread type on all four wheel positions.
  • Use only radial ply tires of the same size, load range, and speed rating as the original equipment tires.
  • Winter tires with the same speed rating as the Original Equipment tires may not be available for H, V, W, Y, X, Z, and R speed-rated tires. If winter tires with a lower speed rating are chosen, never exceed the tires’ maximum speed capability.

Thinking about getting winter tires?

Consider installing winter tires if frequent driving on ice- or snow-covered roads is expected. See your dealer for details regarding winter tire availability and proper tire selection

Reading a tire sidewall

Tire Size

The tire size is a combination of letters and numbers used to define a particular tire's width, height, aspect ratio, construction type, and service description.

How to read the sidewall of a tire

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION (DOT)

The DOT code indicates that the tire is in compliance with U.S. Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Safety Standards.

How to read the sidewall of a tire

Tire Identification Number (TIN)

The letters and numbers following the DOT code make up the TIN. The TIN shows the manufacturer and plant code, tire size, and date the tire was manufactured. The TIN is molded onto both sides of the tire, although only one side may have the date of manufacture.

How to read the sidewall of a tire

Tire Ply Material

The type of cord and number of plies in the sidewall and under the tread.

 

Since tires play a major role in establishing the personality of a vehicle, many manufacturers require their tire suppliers to identify their Original Equipment (OE) tires with symbols or codes branded on the sidewalls.

 

The goal is to make it easier for owners to identify and select exact replacements when the OE tires wear out. Matching the original tires exactly helps maintain the vehicle's integrity.

How to read the sidewall of a tire

Uniform Tire Quality Grading (UTQG)

A tire information system that provides consumers with ratings for a tire's traction (from AA to C) and for temperature (from A to C). Tread wear is normally rated from 60 to 620. Ratings are determined by tire manufacturers using government-prescribed test procedures and are molded into the sidewall of the tire.

How to read the sidewall of a tire

Maximum Cold Inflation Load Limit

This information tells the maximum load that can be carried and the maximum pressure needed to support that load. Find more information on tire pressure and inflation.

How to read the sidewall of a tire

Tire Performance Criteria Specification (TPC SPEC)

Most OE tires designed to GM's specific tire performance criteria have a TPC spec code molded onto the sidewall. GM's TPC specs meet or exceed all federal safety guidelines. 

How to read the sidewall of a tire

What are the tire speed ratings?

Tire speed ratings tell the speed your tire can safely maintain over time. The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) set the ratings scale, shown below. But tire manufacturers test their own tires and assign their own tire speed ratings. On the sidewall of every tire, you'll find one of these tire speed rating codes:

Tire speed rating codes
Tire speed rating codes

Where to find your tire speed rating & load index

Your Chevrolet tires have a load index and tire speed rating symbol (see diagram). Use the Tire Finder (above) to find the Original Equipment tire size, tire load index, and a tire speed rating for your vehicle.

 

A load index is an assigned number ranging from 1 to 279 that corresponds to the load-carrying capacity of a tire. Passenger cars and light-duty trucks generally have load index number that ranges from 72 to 120.

 

We recommend replacing your Chevrolet tires with ones that have the same load and speed values as those originally installed on your vehicle. Do not replace tires on your vehicle with a lower load and speed value. Replacing tires that have a higher load and speed value is acceptable.

 

Note: Winter tires often have lower speed ratings. If winter tires are not available in the same speed rating as the Original Equipment tires, you must not exceed the speed rating of the winter tire chosen.

Tire speed and load index
300 x 120
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*The Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price excludes destination freight charge, tax, title, license, dealer fees and optional equipment. Click here to see all Chevrolet vehicles' destination freight charges.

  • Up to $100 via tire rebate and up to $100 in statement credit. Combined offer ends 11/30/17. See participating U.S. dealer or mycertifiedservicerebates.com for details and rebate form, which must be postmarked by 12/31/17. Allow 6 to 8 weeks for delivery of debit card. $100 rebate good on Bridgestone, Continental, Goodyear, Hankook, and Pirelli tires. Not available with other offers. Credit approval required. You must apply via servicecardapply.com. You are eligible to receive this promotion within the first 30 days of application approval. This one-time credit will appear on your 1st, 2nd, or 3rd statement and will be in the amount of your first dealership purchase, up to $100, on service, parts, or accessories.

  • Ad, written estimate, or Internet quote for identical tire(s) from a competing tire retailer/installer located within 100 miles of the dealer required during guarantee period for price match. Offer valid at participating U.S. dealers.

  • The Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price excludes destination freight charge, tax, title, license, dealer fees and optional equipment. Click here to see all Chevrolet vehicles' destination freight charges.