Tire Question

goldensmomOctober 26, 2006

If I'm buying 2 new tires for front wheel drive do the new tires go on front or back?

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    Bookmark   October 26, 2006 at 9:48PM
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Hmmm ... I'd say on the back. My thinking is that you want the worse-performing tires to be up front, where the limits of traction are apparent. If you put the good tires up front, the lightly-loaded rear tires may be asked to "cash the check" that the good front tires have written. Given how relatively little rear tires have to do on a FWD vehicle, the car would end up wanting to swap the back end for the front.

Perhaps more important than where the tires go, however, is that they match the existing ones. I've driven cars with new tires on the front which were different than the ones in back, and, even under clear and dry conditions, emergency or rapid handling sometimes was an unwelcome surprise. Radial tires really should be replaced in fours. I'd sooner go with four cheaper new radials than two new tires and two older different ones.

Hope that helps....

    Bookmark   October 27, 2006 at 9:47AM
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If you can only afford to replace two tires, put the good ones up front for front wheel drive. About 70% of the braking effort is up front for front wheel drives. You also need the best taction tires on the driven wheels (front ones for your case) to keep going in snow. On front wheel drives, the front tires wear down much faster than the rears. However, its best to have the same type of tires on all four wheels for autos.

Note: In my opinion, the older GM Citation/Phoenix cars had too great of percentage of braking effort porportioned to the rear wheels. This caused these vehicles to tend to swap ends when the brakes were applied on icy surfaces. This statement supports putting the greater anti-skid tires on the rear which is the opposite of my recommendation above. However, if the braking effort is properly porportioned, I think that it is best to put the better tires up front.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 4:52AM
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uneven wear? have you been rotating your tires? it does not sound like it. you should always rotate tires so they wear evenly and than you can replace them as a full set for consistant traction/handling.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 9:19AM
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The car is being driven by the front, steered by the front, 60-70% of the braking is from the front, and most of the weight is on the front. For those reasons, put the best ones on the front. Better to have the same thing all around though. If it were me I'd bite the bullet and spring for four. jmo

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 11:50AM
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Thanks everyone....the reason for the question in the 1st place is that web site Tires 101 recommended always putting new tires on the back regardless of front wheel drive which didn't make sense to me but does to steve o. Anyhow I had the new ones put on the front and they are now the same brand all way around.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 2:04PM
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Here is a link that might be useful: Polular mechanics

    Bookmark   May 2, 2011 at 9:27AM
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