Q: Why don’t my tires last very long?

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I thought I was being frugal when I bought my 2006 Honda Civic, but it’s going through tires so fast that I might as well have bought something more expensive! I'm spending a lot on tires because when my first pair wore out really quickly, I thought low quality tires were the root of the problem. I bought a very high quality (read: expensive) set of wheels to hopefully eliminate the problem (I didn’t even know that this was a problem - just thought I was too rough on the factory tires) but after half of their warrantied mileage, they were covered in flat spots! The road noise was so annoying that I had the tires replaced again. This is too many tires for 80,000 miles! I mostly drive on the highway anyway. How can I solve this problem?

SInce your tires wore out so quickly, the first question that comes to mind is: when was the last time you had an alignment performed? Having the alignment checked prior to or upon installation of new tires assures that the suspension components (ie. arms, bushing and shocks) are in good shape and not causing too much movement, resulting in alignment change which causes tire wear. If all the current suspension components are good shape and you still have the original rear upper control arms, you will likely need to have those original arms replaced to reduce tire wear. There was a settlement which had an end date of January 16, 2014 to have these arms replaced by the dealer at no charge. If you have taken the car to your dealer with this concern, you might have the updated arms already installed. A simple check by the technician doing the alignment can see if the arms are installed. The updated arms have a “C” stamped on the rear upper control arm. If your car does not have these arms, it would be a good idea to have them installed to decrease tire wear. To have your vehicle inspected, please contact YourMechanic and one of our technicians will be happy to assist.

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