If the time has come for you to replace your tires, you may either have been given a set or have ones that used to be on an older vehicle. While you may have noticed that the tires are taller than the ones that are currently on your car, you may still be tempted to just go ahead and use them. However, there are a couple of issues that you may run into when you try to use tires that are taller than is recommended for your car.
1. Speedometer Will Show a Slower Speed
One problem that is often caused by using tires that are too large for your car is that the larger size will affect the way your speedometer works. When your speedometer is calibrated, it is done while using a set range for the tire sizes.
However, if you have tires that are larger than this range, the speedometer will register a slower speed than you are actually traveling. This happens because larger tires have fewer rotations than smaller tires.
Because the speedometer works by counting these rotations, it falsely gives you a slower speed than you are actually going. When this happens, you may be speeding without realizing, putting you at risk of getting a ticket or endangering other people and yourself.
2. Car Will Not Handle or Brake as Smoothly
Another issue caused by putting large tires on your car is that the vehicle will not handle as smoothly as it should. When the car is designed and constructed, the wheelbase and axles are set to work with specifically sized tires.
When you put tires on your vehicle that are too large, the wheelbase will not turn as well as it would with the correct ones. You may feel a momentary loss of control when going around sharp corners or when you hit bumps in the road. Also, your brakes may not work as smoothly with the larger tires. Since the size of the brakes is matched to the size of the tires, they may not fully engage when you try to stop or slow down. This could put you at risk of a collision.
Installing tires that are taller than recommended on your vehicle could make for a bumpier ride as well as put you at risk for getting a speeding ticket. Instead of settling on the wrong tires that you already have laying around, take your car to a tire service so that they can show you various options for the right sized tires your vehicle needs to operate correctly.