How to Do a Tire Rotation Yourself

mechanic rotating front tire


Tire rotation is an important part of your routine vehicle maintenance. Whether you plan on rotating your tires at home or bringing your vehicle to our service center, you’ll enjoy a number of benefits that come with rotating your tires. In addition to having better traction on your Smyrna commute, you’ll also lengthen the lifespan of your tires. Learn more about the benefits of rotating your tires and how to rotate your tires with Marietta Toyota below, and then, learn what the numbers on your tires mean! 

Why is Tire Rotation Important?

As you drive on Atlanta roads, your tires will wear at different rates due to your driving habits and the road conditions. Normally, the outside edges of your front tires will show greater wear, while the rear tires will wear more evenly. This is mostly due to the impact tires experience when you turn your car. If you leave your tires in the same spot for too long, they will wear at different rates, and you’ll need to replace them sooner. 

How Often Should You Rotate Your Tires?

Depending on the drivetrain you have, you’ll need to rotate your tires at different intervals. Front and rear-wheel drive tires will need to be rotated every 5,000 – 7,500 miles, while all-wheel drive tires require more frequent rotations at every 3,000 – 5,000 miles. This is because each tire on AWD vehicles are actively engaged while driving, which can result in faster wear. However, we recommend you check your owner’s manual and consult with a certified technician to see when your specific vehicle’s tires should be rotated. 

Tire Rotation Positions

If you’ve decided to rotate your tires at your Kennesaw home, there are some tire rotation tips you should keep in mind for AWD and RWD tire rotation:

  • FWD Tires: You can move the front tires to the back of the car in the same left/right positions. When it comes time to move the rear tires to the front, you must switch the right and left tire.
  • RWD Tires: The opposite is true with RWD vehicles. The rear tires can be moved to the front of the car in the same left/right positions, but when you move the front tires to the rear, you need to switch the left and right tire.

AWD Tire Rotation Tips

If you have an all-wheel drive (AWD) vehicle, then your car will have different tire rotation than FWD or RWD vehicles. Since power from your engine is sent to every wheel when you engage AWD, the rotation will need to be done in a specific way. You’ll also follow these tips when rotating your AWD tires at home:

  1. The left rear goes to the right front spot.
  2. The right rear goes to the left front spot.
  3. The right front goes to the left rear spot.
  4. The left front goes to the right rear spot.

To make this process easier, we recommend drawing a simple diagram of your drivetrain and using color-coded arrows to help you move your tires properly. If you prefer to have a professional team rotate your tires, though, you can always schedule service at Marietta Toyota! 

How to Rotate Your Tires at Home

When you’re ready to rotate your tires at home, you will need a carjack, lug nut wrench, and a set of carjack stands. Once you have acquired the necessary tools, follow these six easy steps:

  1. Engage your parking brake as a safety precaution.
  2. Loosen the lug nuts on all four wheels, but don’t take them all the way off. This step makes unscrewing them when the tire is elevated much easier.
  3. Lift up one wheel with a carjack and place the jack stand underneath it.
  4. Remove the tires one by one.
  5. Take this time to make sure your tires are filled to the optimal tire pressure. Once filled, you can rotate them according to the appropriate pattern for your type of tires. Place the tire back onto the wheel mount and screw the lug nuts on by hand as far as you can.
  6. Lower the car from the jack stands and use the lug wrench to finish tightening the nuts. It’s best to work the lug nuts diagonally from one to another in a star pattern to ensure even tightening. If the lug nuts aren’t tightened evenly, it can cause the brake rotor to warp.

Have Your Tires Rotated at Marietta Toyota 

If you prefer to have your tires rotated at our service center, our OEM certified technicians are happy to help you out! We’ll rotate your tires and inspect them to make sure they’re safe to drive on Marietta roads, and we’ll even help you save on your visit with our rotating service specials. Come by today and have your tires rotated by our team, then read our other service tips for more DIY car care!

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