Taking Care of Tires

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    Tires are an expensive investment. When buying new tires for your tractor, you likely do so with longevity in mind. After hours or even days of comparison shopping to make sure you get the most bang for your buck, the last thing you want to do is bring your tractor home with a brand new set of tires and damage them. To preserve tires and make them last, there are a few things you should keep in mind in order to ensure that you will get plenty of life from your new tires.

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    The most important aspect of tire care is proper inflation. PSI information can be found in your owner/operator\'s manual and is the best guide to follow when it comes to what your tractor needs. Tires that are over-inflated will be more prone to wear on the treads as well as reduced traction. On the other hand, if your tires are under-inflated, you could experience things such as carcass failure, rim bruising, and sagging sidewalls. Once your tires are inflated (or deflated, as the case may be) to the proper pressure, ensure they stay where they belong by adding a routine tire check to your maintenance schedule. This is especially important in the case of tires with fluid weight as the air space within the tire is reduced and needs to be more exact. Investing in a good air pressure gauge (or air-water gauge in the case of tires with fluid weight) and air pump is something you will not regret. Also be sure that your wheel weights are in place per the owner/operator\'s manual to prevent slippage and maintain traction when your tractor is in use.

    Another part of your routine maintenance in addition to monitoring tire pressure is checking for any sort of tire damage. Carcass breaks and cuts can be repaired if caught early, so make it a point to stay on top of these things. As soon as you notice a break occurring, get it attended to in order to avoid even more damage in the future. Since you are getting up close and personal with your tires as you check them for damage, also keep an eye out for oil and grease on your tires. These things can be damaging as well and should be cleaned off immediately.

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    Remember that tractor and implement tires are designed to operate at low speeds. Best case scenario for new tires is a top speed of about 15 miles per hour; if your tires are aging, you should not risk even going that fast, especially when loaded down or traversing rough terrain. Caution in speed, load, and terrain should be exercised regardless of tire condition, but taking tire condition into additional consideration is in your best interests.

    A new set of tires on your tractor or implements should last you a considerable amount of time. This will vary depending on how heavily they are used and under what conditions, but what you do not want is for your tires to meet an untimely demise. Taking some extra time out of your workday to check on and maintain tires is not only necessary to keep your tractor in good working order, but is also essential for your own safety. If your tires fail at an inopportune time, your tractor could roll and you could be injured, so when it comes to tires, avoid cutting corners and give them the TLC they deserve.

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