Category Archives: Tires and Wheels

The PONTE'S AUTOCARE Guide to Custom Wheels

The PONTE'S AUTOCARE Guide to Custom Wheels

If you're interested in customizing the wheels and tires on your vehicle, there are a few things you should know first.Most importantly, the wheels you buy need to fit your vehicle. Not all wheels are created equal. Too many Wilmington drivers have bought a set of wheels that caught their eye, then, after going to the work of mounting them, have found that the wheels don't fit right and the tires rub against the vehicle when they turn or go over a bump.To ensure a proper fit, you can consult with your PONTE'S AUTOCARE tire professional. He/she can also help you find tires that are suited to your driving habits as well as your vehicle. You may find their auto advice invaluable, and you'll probably be happier with your new wheels once you purchase them.But if you just have to have that set of wheels, and you're willing to pay for them, you can modify your vehicle to fit the wheels. Again, you should see ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Go Big or Go Home: Upsize Your Wheels at PONTE'S AUTOCARE

Go Big or Go Home: Upsize Your Wheels at PONTE'S AUTOCARE

A lot of us Wilmington drivers like our vehicles to reflect our personalities. We're picky about color and body style. We'll customize anything from floor mats to window tints to license plates. One popular way for Delaware motorists to customize a vehicle is to get new wheels.Wheels come in thousands of designs. Custom wheels can add personality, style or sass to a vehicle. Many of these customizations involve getting a bigger wheel.Fifteen or 16-inch wheels used to be the factory standard, but today, because a lot of Wilmington drivers like the look of larger wheels, many vehicles are available with 17 or 18-inch wheels. Optional wheel packages of 20 inches or more are also available in Wilmington.If you want to upsize the wheels on your current vehicle, however, you should know it's not a do-it-yourself project. There are factors involved in ensuring your wheel change doesn't jeopardize the safety of your vehicle.First of all, you need to understand rolling diameter ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Getting New Tires in Wilmington?

There are so many tire choices in the Wilmington area that selecting the right one can be a bit overwhelming for drivers. And even though it's kind of fun to have new tires on your vehicle, they're a significant investment for most Wilmington area folks so you want do it right.Tip: talk with your friendly and knowledgeable PONTE'S AUTOCARE tire professional. He'll help you sort through the choices.Here are some of the issues you'll talk about: One is size – you know, all those numbers on the side of the tire. The right size is . All new vehicles are required to have stability control which, along with other important safety systems, is calibrated to work with specific tire sizes. Your Wilmington tire professional can help stay within manufacturer's specifications or program a different tire size into your vehicle's computer.And you'll want to discuss how and where you drive to determine the type of tire you need: summer, winter,  all season ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Tire Maintenance in Wilmington

Tire Maintenance in Wilmington

With the recent focus in the Wilmington area on improving fuel economy, we've been told how important it is to maintain our tire pressure.Wilmington drivers know that tires wear out, but we want to make them last as long as possible because they're not cheap to replace. In addition to saving gas, properly inflated tires last longer. Underinflated tires will wear out more quickly.Some people in Wilmington wonder if they should add a few extra pounds of pressure when they fill up their tires. Bad idea. In fact, there are very good reasons not to overinflate your tires. For one, the middle of the tread will wear unevenly because the full tread is not contacting the road properly. That also adversely affects your handling. Stop by PONTE'S AUTOCARE to see about tire maintenance for your vehicle. PONTE'S AUTOCARE2401 Concord PikeWilmington, Delaware 19803302-478-9786 Every vehicle in the Wilmington area has a sticker on the driver's side door jamb that ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Fuel Saving Tip: Tire Pressure Saves Fuel in Wilmington

Fuel Saving Tip: Tire Pressure Saves Fuel in Wilmington

Underinflated tires waste gas for lots of folks in the Wilmington area. Think how hard it is to walk in sand – you just have to work harder because of the resistance. When your tires don't have enough air in them, their rolling resistance is dramatically increased and it simply takes more gas to get from here to there.Always check your tire pressure when you gas up at one of our local Wilmington service stations. If they're low – even just a little bit – bring them up to proper pressure. There's a sticker on the inside of your driver's door that gives the manufacturer's recommended tire pressure.And don't rely on your tire pressure monitoring system to alert you to when you need more air. The TPMS system is set to warn you when pressure drops 20 percent below recommendations. That's severely underinflated and you needed more air a long time ago. And if you have a slow leak – get it fixed right away at PONTE'S AUTOCARE ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Tire Tread Depth for Wilmington, Delaware Drivers

Tire Tread Depth for Wilmington, Delaware Drivers

Driving on bald tires is like playing roulette. Though you may be fine today, eventually your luck is going to run out.The Feds don't have any laws for tread depth, but 42 of the states, and all of Canada, do have regulations. They consider 2/32 of an inch to be the minimum legal tread depth. Two other states, including California, consider 1/32 to be the minimum and six states have no standards at all. Call us at PONTE'S AUTOCARE; (just call 302-478-9786) to find out what your requirements are in the Wilmington, Delaware, area.Since 1968, U.S. law has required that a raised bar be molded across all tires. When tires are worn enough that this bar becomes visible, there's just 2/32 inch/1.6 mm of tread left. But does that older standard give Wilmington vehicles enough safety?Consider this: Consumer Reports recommends tire replacement when tread reaches 4/32 inch/3.2 mm. And the recommendation is backed by some very compelling studies. Now before we go into the stud ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Wheel Bearings

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Wheel Bearings

Why are wheel bearings for Wilmington vehicles important? It's simple: your wheel bearings keep the wheels on your vehicle. In today's PONTE'S AUTOCARE post, we'll discuss more about wheel bearings and how you can make sure they can do their very job while you drive around Wilmington, Delaware. Wheel bearings are pretty simple parts. They're made of high quality steel and are engineered to last 100,000 miles (160,000)  or more if properly cared for. The bearings do two jobs: First, they allow the wheel to freely rotate with as little friction as possible. Second, they support the weight of the vehicle. For example, if your car weighs 3,600 pounds (1600 kilogram), each wheel has to support approximately 900 pounds (400 kilograms). That's a lot of heavy lifting over those long distances.Even though wheel bearings are pretty straightforward, they need to be in near perfect condition to do their job for Wilmington vehicles. The bearings are packed with heavy grease to ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

When Are Your Tires Worn Out?

When Are Your Tires Worn Out?

  Hey Wilmington area drivers, are your tires worn out? What is the standard for our Delaware streets? How can you tell on your vehicle?While there may be legal requirements for the Wilmington area, there are safety concerns that go beyond meeting minimum replacement mandates.Two-thirty-seconds of an inch is the depth of the tire tread wear indicator bars that US law has required to be molded across all tires since August 1, 1968. When tires are worn so that this bar is visible, there's just 2/32 of an inch – 1.6 millimeters – of tread left. It's that level of wear that's been called into question recently.We're referring to the tread depth on a tire, it can't move surface water out of the way and you start to hydroplane.In a safety study, a section of a test track was flooded with a thin layer of water. If you laid a dime on the track, the water would be deep enough to surround the coin, but not enough to cover it.A car and a full-sized pick-up accelerated&n ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Wilmington Safety Systems: Tire Pressure Monitoring System

Wilmington Safety Systems: Tire Pressure Monitoring System

Flats, blow outs, skids and longer stopping distances can all be the result of driving around Wilmington on underinflated tires. Admittedly, it's hard to tell when a radial tire is underinflated. If your vehicle manufacturer recommends 35 pounds of pressure, your vehicle tires are considered significantly underinflated at 26 pounds. The tire may not look low until it gets below 20 pounds.New laws require all vehicles to include a tire pressure monitor system, or TPMS. This technology has been used by race car drivers for years. They are able to head off problems from underinflation by closely monitoring tire pressure on the track. It's up to your vehicle's manufacturer to determine which of many TPMS systems available they'll use to comply with the law.Obviously, all of this doesn't come free for Wilmington drivers. Government studies have estimated the net costs. Of course, the TPMS system itself will cost something. Maintaining th ... read more

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Tires and Wheels

Buying the Right Tires and Wheels in Wilmington, Delaware

Buying the Right Tires and Wheels in Wilmington, Delaware

Everyone in Wilmington, Delaware eventually replaces their tires, whether it's because they're worn out or they're just looking for something different. There are so many great tire choices in Wilmington, it can be difficult to sort them out. Let's group the broad spectrum into several categories that will help in the selection process.One category is often referred to as "summer tires". Summer tires are designed to be driven on the road when temperatures are generally above 45 degrees F (7 degrees C). Their tread design is optimized for traction on dry roads around Delaware and they're also able to effectively displace water on rainy roads.So if you live where its summer all year round, these tires will work well for you. If you like maximum performance in warm weather, but still live where it gets cold and snowy, you'll want to change your summer tires for winter tires as the weather starts to change.There's a range of tires within the winter tire category. If you live where there's ... read more

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Tires and Wheels
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