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Old 09-21-2005, 10:52 PM
Critical1 Critical1 is offline
Join Date: Nov 2000
Posts: 3,466
Rotating the tires, left to right a no no?

I was told recently that rotating the tires from side to side can cause them to separate, I have never heard this and since the curb side tires are taking quite a beating (I teach drivers ed) I could sure stanc to spread out the damage as much as possible to save the sidewalls from wearing out before the treads.

anyone ever hear this before or are these guys just trying to blow my tires as fast as possible to sell me more?
Old 09-21-2005, 11:07 PM
Rhubarb Rhubarb is offline
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Venus, Texas
Posts: 1,957
In the days of my misspent youth, before radial belted tires were widely available, the standard tire rotation was FL to RR, RR to RL, RL to FR, FR to FL (or something similar), rinse and repeat. This gave each tire equal time in each position. With the advent of radial tires, the only allowed rotation is FL to RL and FR to RR, so that the tires always stay on the same side of the vehicle they were originally installed on. I once foolishly ignored this rule and ended up having both of my rear tires suffer catastrophic blowouts within a few thousand miles. And they still had plenty of tread on them! I don't know the exact explanation for it, although I've been given a few different ones from various tire shops, but it has to do with the radial belting. Sorry I can't be more illuminating, but my memory is hazy and the explanations were weak.

One note, I have heard or read that newer radial tires can be rotated left-right, but I would get the tire manufacturer backing your warranty to confirm that.
Old 09-21-2005, 11:29 PM
Schuyler Schuyler is offline
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: SF Bay Area, California
Posts: 465
Newer radial tire construction makes separation far less likely, and recommended rotation patterns are usually some form of cross pattern (assuming that you don't have directional tires). TireRack has guidance on their website about permissible rotation schemes, including:

Four (4) Tire Rotation
  • On front wheel drive cars, rotate the tires in a forward cross pattern (fig. A) or the alternative X pattern (fig. B)
  • On rear wheel or four wheel drive vehicles, rotate the tires in a rearward cross pattern (fig. C) or the alternative X pattern (fig. B)
Old 09-22-2005, 01:47 AM
Critical1 Critical1 is offline
Join Date: Nov 2000
Posts: 3,466
this board rules, thanks guys
Old 09-22-2005, 08:28 AM
Balthisar Balthisar is offline
Charter Member
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Southeast Michigan, USA
Posts: 10,477
When I was home last weekend, I put new tires on my car. It'll be hard to cross-rotate them, since the tread pattern is decidedly directional. (Michelin Hydroedge FWIW), whether they're bias or radial.
Old 09-22-2005, 08:59 AM
Gary T Gary T is offline
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: KCMO
Posts: 11,189
Directional tires need to stay on one side of the car, unless you want to go to the trouble of removing them from the wheels and remounting them. They are designed to rotate in one direction only.

When radial tires first became popular, switching them to the opposite side often caused problems. This has not been the case, however, for the last twenty years or so.


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