Wheel swaps form an integral part of tyre management, and are a routine service item following fleet checks which help to maximise tyre life and reduce spend.
Wheel swaps are carried out for a number of reasons including:
On twin positions such as on the drive axle of a tractor unit, wheels are swapped in order to pair tyres with similar or matching tread depths. A misalignment of tread depth results in the vehicle load being carried unevenly across the tyres which in turn can lead to the premature wear of tyres.
- Tread Depth Alignment Across Axle
On a trailer it is recommended that the tyres with the largest amount of tread are placed on the rear axle, whilst tyres which have been recut or have low tread are placed on the middle axle. This configuration ensures maximum tyre life across all positions, and as such fleet checks are used to highlight where swaps can and should be made.
As recuts should not generally be placed on a steering axle, it is common that a non regrooved tyre from a lift axle will be swapped with a steer axle tyre which has just been recut in order to prolong tyre life whilst also ensuring optimum safety on the road.
On many occasions wheel swaps are also combined with a turn on rim where sloped or irregular wear has been highlighed as a problem.
Truck tyre retreads provide an effective way of reducing your tyre spend on both unit and trailer.
Retreads can either purchased direct from Truck Tyre Solutions as new or through a casing bank, which utilises a customer’s suitable end of life tyre casings in order to manufacture retreads and supply them at a process only price.
This is possible because the retread manufacturer with whom your casing bank is held gets the casings directly from you, rather than purchasing them from a 3rd party and therefore has a reduced manufacturing cost.
The retreading process involves a stringent casing examination process by which end of life tyres are graded according to their condition. All suitable tyres are then sent for remoulding.
There are two main types of remould available:
A top cap remould essentially has a new section of tread heat cured on to the casing. The original casing along with its branding is still visible as only the tread section has been replaced by the manufacturer.
Casings that are use to create bead to bead remoulds are no longer visible. The whole casing including tread and sidewall is used to build the newly remoulded tyre. Only the branding of the remould manufacturer should be visible.
It is not recommended to use remoulded tyres on steering axles in the majority of circumstances. However they can be used on both drive axles and on trailers if they are suited to your operating conditions.
Truck Tyre Solutions deal with a range of retreaders to ensure that our services can be tailored directly to your needs. If you would like to know more about casing management and remoulding or if retreads are suitable for your fleet we will be happy to help.
The recutting or regrooving of a tyre can add valuable millimetres of tread which result in more miles and better value for money.
By monitoring your tyres through our regular fleet check programme we are able to ensure that the highest possible proportion of tyres on your fleet are regrooved in order to obtain maximum tyre life because of effective tyre management.
Tyres should ideally be regrooved when they have 3 – 5 millimetres of tread remaining. This leaves enough rubber on the tyre to recut it safely. With less tread there is a higher risk that the recutting blade will cut through to the base rubber and to the cords, which in turn can damage the tyre.
Depending on vehicle type your truck tyres can be recut irregardless of whether they are on:
- Steer Axle
- Life Axle
- Drive Axle
- Tag Axle
It is however not advisable to place a recut tyre onto a steer axle, so based on tyre size and vehicle configuration the recut tyre can either be swapped with another position on the same or another vehicle or it can be stored as a COP casing which can be refitted to an appropriate vehicle within the fleet at a later date.
Not all brands of tyre are regroovable, and our tyre fitters will inspect the tyre for the appropriate markings whilst also checking it for visible signs of damage which may mean that the tyre requires repair or replacement as it may not be safe to recut.
Different brands and patterns must be recut in different ways, and as such manufacturers will provide information on how a specific tyre should be regrooved. This should only ever be carried out by a trained technician.
A turn on rim is when a tyre is demounted and refitted after being turned around so that the inner and outer lanes of tread are effectively swapped over.
This is carried out for a number of reasons, all of which serve to prolong the life of the tyre in order to obtain maximum value for money. The reasons for turning a tyre on the rim include:
- Sidewall Scuffing or Minor Damage
- Irregular or Sloped Wear
- Shoulder Wear
During a fleet check our fully trained tyre technicians will look for signs of the above, and advise where a turn on rim is required in order to avoid premature tyre replacement.
A tyre which is showing signs of sloped wear for example can actually wear level again once turned on its rim as the faster wear on one side eventually serves to bring the tread depths back in to line.
Turning a tyre on the rim can also help to improve your end of life casing value as part of your casing management policy.
Most of the conditions which lead to a turn on rim being carried out are caused simply due to operating conditions, but can also be a sign of other problems including misaligned wheels. Truck Tyre Solutions can work with you to rectify these problems, and advise how they can be avoided in future.
If a wheel is removed and refitted to a commercial vehicle Truck Tyre Solutions advise that you should have your wheel nuts checked and retorqued as necessary after 30 minutes standing, or covering 50 kilometres.
Wheel nuts can become loose for a number of reasons, and this is why after initially refitting the wheel a further check should be carried out after a certain period to ensure that all nuts are tightened to the correct level.
Failure to do this can result in a number of issues including:
- Damage To Studs
- Damage To Wheels
- Damage To Hub
- Loss Of Wheel
- Vehicle Damage
This is why every single set of paperwork that Truck Tyre Solutions issues on completion of work clearly states that checks should be carried out in order to ensure that costly and potentially dangerous damage does not occur.
Commercial vehicle drivers should also carry out daily checks on their vehicles in order to spot any problems such as loose wheel nuts before they go on the road. Wheel nut pointers can provide a simple yet effective visual indicator to a driver which will allow their to easily spot this problem before it’s too late.
Wheel nut pointers are set up in pairs on concurrent wheel nuts, effectively pointing at one another once the wheel nuts have been tightened. If the alignment of a pointer changes so that it is no longer directly in line with its partner this is a clear visual indication that the wheel nuts have loosened and require immediate attention.
Failure to implement adequate procedures to prevent these kinds of problems can result in a range of different issues between VOSA and any commercial vehicle operator including fines.
Should you require wheel nut pointers Truck Tyre Solutions can supply and fit them as necessary, and will be more than happy to help you if you need more information.