How to Diagnose Tire Noise Issues

by Contributor

When your tires start making noises, it can mean a number of different things. The best thing you can do when you start hearing noises is to stop your car and look at your tire for any obvious damage.

Inspect your tire. Look for any bubbles or knots on the side of the tire. Look for any damage to the tread. A bubble or knot can mean that you hit a curb, pothole or another object on the road. Bubbles and knots can sometimes be repaired, but more often lead to the need for replacement of the tire.

Think about what you were doing when you first noticed the tire noise. If you just hit a pothole or a curb, chances are you have a bubble on your tire and that it needs to be fixed or replaced. If you had recently spun out of control or had to make a forced turn quickly, you might have an alignment problem and the noise might not be a tire issue at all.

Listen to the noise while you're driving. If it's a repeated thud on regular intervals, you likely have a severe knot problem on your tire. Take the car to a tire repair place as soon as possible. Tire knots may not appear serious at first but can be potentially dangerous.

Check the tire to make sure it's securely attached to your car. If the tire appears loose at all or out of center, secure and align the tire and see if that solves the problem.

Look at the tread on the tire. Sometimes you will hear a noise on a tire if the tread is incredibly low. It may also be shredding. If your tire is coming apart or has low tread, replace the tire.

Compare how the tire looks with the other tires on your car. It should look about the same. If it looks like the tire is low on air pressure, fill up the tire with air. If it bubbles in strange places or appear to has a leak, get a tire patch kit or take it to be repaired by a tire care professional.

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