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Why is my vehicle swaying from side to side?

In Alignment, Tires and Wheels by Steves Auto Repair and Tire

Is your vehicle swaying from side to side?

It could be a sign that a part needs to be replaced.

This was the case with a 2004 Ford F250 that was dropped off. Our customer, who bought the truck recently, felt like it was wandering. He compared it to the swaying of a boat.

There were no braking problems or steering wheel issues. The driver also didn’t feel any vibrations.

Brian checked out the truck and determined that it needed a new drag link. This part connects the steering gear box and tie rod ends and is usually found on larger vehicles, such as trucks and vans.

Vehicle swaying
New drag link

After the drag link was installed, we performed a wheel alignment.

We recommend having wheel alignments – also known as “tire alignments” – performed once a year, or when you get new tires or steering suspension components.

A bad drag link isn’t the only possible reason why a vehicle is swaying. 

Loose suspension parts, such as ball joints and tie rods, may also cause it to feel unstable.

Tire wear can also impact steering.

In order to pass the Virginia Safety Inspection, the minimum tread depth of a tire is 2/32 of an inch. Manufacturers may recommend replacing the tires between 3/32 of an inch to 5/32 of an inch.

Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire is an authorized Goodyear tire dealer located in Woodbridge, Virginia. Automotive repair services are performed on all makes and models, including BMW and Mercedes. Services include oil changes, brakes, alignments, inspections, and computer engine diagnostics. 

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Goodyear Assurance CS Fuel Max Tire: A tire for commuters

In Tires and Wheels by Steves Auto Repair and Tire

Daily commuters know the importance of having a vehicle they can count on. Part of having a trusty car means having a good, solid set of tires.

The Goodyear Assurance CS Fuel Max Tire is one option we recommend for those who are regularly embarking on those Northern Virginia roads.

This all season tire comes with several helpful traits that can make traveling a little less stressful. 

A Goodyear Tire for all seasons

Our region’s weather seems to constantly be changing. The Goodyear Assurance CS Fuel Max Tire is able to keep up with the forecast – whether they are calling for snow, rain or sun. 

It offers traction in wet and light snowy conditions, thanks to a center wet zone.

During wet weather, dual aqua channels push water off of its tread and move water away from the tire, helping motorists stay on the road.

The Goodyear Tire also features an outer dry zone that improves the tire’s grip and handling. That trait helps give motorists a confident drive.

Thicker tread on the shoulder provides even more grip when needed.

The Goodyear Assurance CS Fuel Max Tire saves drivers money

It’s always nice to have a little extra cash in your wallet. That’s another benefit that the Goodyear Assurance CS Fuel Max Tire brings to the table. This tire reduces the amount of money drivers spend on fuel.

The tread compound can save as much as 2,600 miles worth of gas throughout the lifespan of four tires. It’s a perk that can be attributed to the compound’s low rolling resistance, which decreases the amount of energy used.

Speaking of lifespan, the Goodyear tire has an extensive one. Its treadlife warranty lasts up to 65,000 miles. So, drivers who travel 12,000 to 13,000 miles a year could go five years – possibly longer – before they need to replace their tires. 

Designed for different makes and models

Some tires are meant to be used on specific kinds of vehicles or for certain purposes. That’s why it’s important to do research or speak with an automotive professional when choosing the right set for your car.

The Goodyear Assurance CS Fuel Max Tire can go on various types of vehicles, including SUVs, crossovers and trucks.

Reinforced construction allows the tire to take on different vehicle weights. It’s also able to have better road contact with a variety of load sizes, because of the cavity shape.

This tire is just one reliable, all season option that Goodyear Tire produces. There’s also the Goodyear Assurance WeatherReady Tire, the Goodyear Eagle Sport All-Season Tire, and the Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac Tire.

Kelly Tire – which is owned by Goodyear Tire – also offers some good choices that many drivers trust, such as the Kelly Edge A/S Tire.

Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire is an authorized Goodyear tire dealer located in Woodbridge, Virginia. Automotive repair services are performed on all makes and models, including BMW and Mercedes. Services include oil changes, brakes, alignments, inspections, and computer engine diagnostics.

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What factors impact tire repair?

In Tires and Wheels by Steves Auto Repair and Tire

Many drivers have had the less-than-pleasant experience of realizing that they have a leaking or flat tire.

If you are able, your best bet is to Google “auto repair shop near me”, and head over.

Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire offers tire repair and goes by guidelines from the U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association.

When a vehicle is brought in, our technicians locate the damage and determine if it’s repairable. For tires that are, a patch plug is added from the inside.

Tire repair
When a vehicle is brought in, our technicians locate the damage and determine if it’s repairable. A patch plug is added from the inside.

We aren’t able to mend injuries that are on the inner or outer shoulder or the sidewall.

The angle is another factor in tire repair.

If it’s more than 45 degrees, it can’t be repaired.

Driving on a flat tire can also cause more damage and result in a tire being irreparable – even if the injury is in the center of the tread. 

Low tire pressure leads to heat buildup, which could cause a tire to come apart on the inside. This damage may be difficult to see just by looking at the outside.

Damage is also possible if a mechanic is careless when mounting tires.

They could tear the tire bead, a problem that is hidden until the tire is removed. 

It’s also important to keep in mind that manufacturers do not recommend tire repair on some run flat tires.

In addition to tire repair, we offer a wide selection of tires, including Goodyear.

Give us a call at (703) 670-8005 or come visit us at 2603 Hanco Center Drive in Woodbridge, and we can help you decide what is the best fit for your vehicle.

Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire is an authorized Goodyear tire dealer located in Woodbridge, Virginia. Automotive repair services are performed on all makes and models, including BMW and Mercedes. Services include oil changes, brakes, alignments, inspections, and computer engine diagnostics. 

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Tire rotations prolong life of tires

In Tires and Wheels by Steves Auto Repair and Tire

Good, reliable tires can be pricey.

Tire rotations are one way you can prolong their treadlife.

We perform tire rotations during oil changes, which we recommend every 3,000 to 5,000 miles.

Read about why oil changes are needed.

The suspension in the front of a vehicle, where the engine is located, is designed differently from the back, which has less weight.

If we leave the tires on the front or the back for too long, they will adapt to that particular weight and cause feathering on the edge of the tires.

Normally, our technicians switch the front tires with those on the back. 

For certain vehicles — like Jeep Wranglers, which have a full-size spare on the back — we perform five-tire rotations, where the tires are rotated clockwise.

This will prevent drivers from having a full-size spare that’s bigger than the tires as they wear down.

Cross tire rotations are provided upon request.

We do not move front tires that are at 4/32 of an inch or less to the back. Doing so increases the probability of hydroplaning.

Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire is an authorized Goodyear tire dealer located in Woodbridge, Virginia. Automotive repair services are performed on all makes and models, including BMW and Mercedes. Services include oil changes, brakes, alignments, inspections, and computer engine diagnostics.

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How a cheap tire may affect the safety of your car

In Tires and Wheels by Steves Auto Repair and Tire

When purchasing new tires, many drivers choose to focus on the price.

You may be able to buy a cheap tire that’s technically the correct size for your car for $99. 

But just because a tire is round and the right size, doesn’t mean it’s the right one for your car.

There are several factors you should keep in mind when getting new tires. The speed rating is one of them.

Tire speed ratings refer to the maximum speed of tires. It can depend on the type of automobile, and what you’re using it for.

For example, sports cars typically have a higher maximum speed, while off-road trucks have a lower one.

Improved grip and power when stopping can be found in tires with a higher speed rating. However, the treadlife is normally lower.

Traction control and the anti-lock brake system (ABS) are two other factors you should consider when buying new tires.

Your car’s anti-lock brake system allows you to maintain steering control by preventing your brakes from locking up during an emergency.

This is applied by traction control, which watches for any tires that are slipping.

Tires are manufactured with traction control and ABS specifications. 

The vehicle manufacturers choose a tire with certain design characteristics that work with Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS) they have designed.

When the manufacturers build the vehicle, part of the plan is how fast the car stops. If you put on a cheaper tire, the ADAS system may still work but it might not stop as quickly as it was originally designed.

Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire is an authorized Goodyear tire dealer located in Woodbridge, Virginia. Automotive repair services are performed on all makes and models, including BMW and Mercedes. Services include oil changes, brakes, alignments, inspections, and computer engine diagnostics.