When you’re traveling 65 miles per hour on the highway, the last thing you want is a tire blowout. Dry rot tires can lead to premature damage that causes dangerous situations.
Whether you drive a Ford Prius or a Newmar motorhome, you need to regularly inspect and properly maintain your tires to avoid dry rot.
Let’s take a look at how to identify and avoid tires with dry rot.
What is tire dry rot?
Dry rot is a type of tire decay that results from excessive exposure to harmful chemicals and other conditions. It is not like wood dry rot, which spreads because of a fungus.
Tire dry rot cannot spread from one tire to another. Instead, increased damage occurs, allowing air to escape from the tire. This makes it almost impossible to inflate the tire properly, which can lead to a flat tire.
What causes dry rot in tires?
You can’t fix dry rot tires. You have to replace them. So make sure as best you can that dry rot doesn’t occur in the first place.
Normally, tires can last up to 10 years, but excessive exposure to heat, cold and harmful chemicals will shorten their life. For this reason, you see many RVs with tire covers at campgrounds or storage areas.
Lack of maintenance can also lead to tire rot. Driving with underinflated tires or too much weight on the tires can cause premature aging.
Tips for preventing dry rot in tires
You don’t want to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on new tires when you can prevent dry rot. With these tips, you can avoid high costs and a dangerous flat tire. Although there’s no 100 percent guarantee it won’t happen, these suggestions will reduce the risk.
Avoid excessive sunlight
Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light can cause dry rot. Sunlight combined with warm weather can cause premature aging of the sidewall.
Always try to park your vehicle in a garage or in the shade. If you will not be using your vehicle for more than a few days, use tire covers.
Avoid extreme temperatures
Both low and high temperatures can damage tires. Temperatures above 68 degrees Fahrenheit and below 45 degrees are likely to increase dry rot.
In addition, regular rapid temperature changes accelerate the evaporation of essential oils in tires. Any time the temperature changes more than 15 degrees Fahrenheit in a few hours, dry rot may occur.
If you live in a place where these conditions exist, you should pay special attention to your tires and inspect them more regularly.