Neglect seen in tire recall
Why doesn't someone ask those who had problems with Firestone ATX, ATX II and Wilderness tires when they last checked the tires for air pressure, alignment, premature wear etc.? Or how about asking: "When was the last time you rotated the tires?" All these things lead to tire failure!
Olson Tire Total Car Care
I run a tire shop about 15 minutes east of Elkart, Ind., a major van conversion center.
First, it was full-sized Chevy, GMC, Ford and Dodge vans of the late 1970s and early'80s that came with P225/75R15 tires as original equipment.
Conversion operators would install raised tops, and inside packages increasing the weight of those vehicles by 1,500-2,000 lbs. and leaving their tires overloaded even without the addition of passengers and cargo.
Now, Ford Explorer/Expeditions and the like are coming off the assembly line with tires having a maximum load carrying capacity of 2,028 lbs. and vehicle makers are advising their owners on the door plate to inflate the rear tires to 26 psi!
Tires should be set at tire makers' recommended psi, not by vehicle manufacturers'.
D. Keith Lauer
Friendly Tire Co.
I'd like to point out how the mass merchandisers were(n't) there for Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. recently in its time of need.
During the tire company's darkest hour, for example, we saw Sears, Roebuck and Co. pull all BFS tires off its shelves, while Wal-Mart and Sam's Club sent their customers to us (Plaza Tire outlets) with the familiar saying from Hogan's Heroes, "I know nothingggg!"
Our company's 40 retail locations are striving to make those customers ours by doing "whatever it takes," in the words of our company president, Mark Rhodes.
We have worked long hours, and will continue to do so, in order to take care of vehicle owners—many of whom had the buck passed on them by these competitors.
Taking care of such customers in addition to our regular business in the recent 100-degree heat is a feather in our helps' hat.
Now that the dust is settling somewhat, similar warranty work (at the outlets of some of these mass merchandising competitors) appears to be picking up momentum and the "me too-ing" on their part has begun.
Hopefully, there will be at least a few customers who will remember which retail establishments lived up to the meaning of the term "certified tire professionals."
Plaza Tire Service
Cape Girardau, Mo.
More highway hazards
Many inexperienced tire outlets are using TR-13 passenger valve stems (rated at 40 psi maximum pressure) in light truck tires inflated to 85 psi. When running at long distances on the highway, brake rotor heat can be great enough to blow the metal out of the stems.
Service technicians should be installing TR600HP truck valve stems (designed for higher-pressure truck tires). Failure to do so has brought us a lot of road service business—and usually on new tires. And luckily, no one has been seriously injured so far as a result.
Graff General Tire Service