Just because your truck has plenty of tires doesn’t mean you can treat them with any less care than you would the tires on your personal vehicle. In fact, you should treat them with considerably more care, because improperly maintained tires can pose a serious risk to you and other drivers.

Step 1: Have the Right Tools on Hand

Using the wrong tools to remove and repair tires can cause unnecessary wear and tear on your tires and your vehicle. When dismounting a tire, you need to spread the pressure necessary to get off the rims, in order to avoid putting excess pressure on the cords. Special demount tools are designed just for this purpose, and are available from a variety of companies and retailers. Beyond ensuring your tires and beads are not damaged, they’ll also save you time by eliminating the need to flip the tire or rim.

Step 2: Know the Appropriate Repair

Some maintenance and repair work can be done with the tire still attached to your rig. Some can’t. Knowing the difference will keep you safer and save you from an emergency trip to the tire store. When it comes to nail holes, you need to demount the tire and use a patch to seal a whole from the inside. You also need to be able to assess whether or not the hole is repairable. If it’s in the wrong spot, the patch won’t cut it. If the whole is too large, you can’t repair it.

Step 3: Get Trained

Formal training in tire maintenance and repair can cost less than the price of a single repair, and it will ensure you understand proper techniques and how to avoid complications.

Before you begin any repair, study your tire’s manufacturer specifications, because not all tires will handle the same types of repairs, or the same repair processes. The more knowledgeable you are about your truck, the better prepared you’ll be to manage a specific repair.

Step 4: Know When to Call a Professional

You won’t be able to handle every tire problem, and you shouldn’t try to. Understanding the extent of your knowledge and the restrictions of your vehicle will keep you safe and keep your truck running longer. There’s no shame in admitting you can’t handle a problem. You’re a driver. Your job is driving. Your mechanic can probably drive your truck just fine, but he’s not going to take on your next cross-country run. When it comes to serious repairs, don’t try doing his job either.

For more information about truck maintenance, or to learn about local trucking opportunities, contact a Contracted Drivers Service representative today.