Torque Shop: Tyre rotation

With regular tyre rotation, each tyre would eventually have served in every corner of the car. PHOTO: ST FILE

I understand tyres need to be rotated regularly for even wear. But I get differing advice on how to rotate. I have a front-wheel-drive car which uses run-flat tyres in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendation.

The tyre manufacturer's website advises that for front-wheel-drive cars using asymmetrical tread tyres, the rear tyres should be moved to the front and remain on the same side. Then, the front tyres should be moved to the back and crossed.

However, when I went to the tyre shop, the owner said I needed only to swop the front and rear tyres, and there is no need to cross them. He said crossing them will cause the tyres to rotate in the opposite direction, which will shorten their lifespan. Who is correct?

The quick answer would be to follow the tyre manufacturer's recommendation.

This is the usual practice in rotating any tyre on a front-wheel-drive car. On asymmetric tyres, there will be an embossing on the sidewall to indicate which side should be on the outside.

With regular tyre rotation, each tyre would eventually have served in every corner of the car. This way, the tyres will wear evenly throughout their usable lives.

In Singapore, it is common to find the front-left tyre experiencing somewhat more wear than the other three. This is because the direction of travel in most multi-level carparks is clockwise. Tyre scrub is increased because of the high steering angles required to negotiate these tight turns.

There are two other important factors to consider when rotating tyres. First, it is not possible to swop front tyres with rear ones or vice versa if the tyres are of different sizes. Second, follow the rotational direction markings on tyres.

If the front and rear tyres are of different sizes - and if they are also asymmetrical and directional - there is no way to carry out tyre rotation.

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