Tires are critically important to your car’s overall performance and safety, but do you know how to prevent voiding your tire warranty? If you don’t, you could end up spending money needlessly on replacement tires that should be covered by your warranty. Don’t get caught short. Learn how to prevent voiding your tire warranty with these five tips.

1. Be sure to properly maintain your tires. – Did you know that improper maintenance for your tires can void your warranty – just as not having regularly scheduled maintenance on your car can void your car warranty? Well, it’s true, but the good news is that tire maintenance is easy enough to do. What do tire manufacturer’s look for when you make a claim that you believe should be covered under your tire warranty? First and foremost, tire manufacturers want to see proof that you’ve kept your tires inflated, rotated and aligned properly.

In tips that reprints from the Bridgestone tire manual, proper tire maintenance includes inflate, rotate and align – according to these recommendations:

  • Ensure even wear on your tires by keeping them inflated to the manufacturer’s recommended tire pressure.
  • Rotate tires according to the manufacturer’s recommendations – or every 5,000 miles, and be sure to keep a record of the service done.
  • Regularly inspect all your vehicle’s tires. Be on the lookout for any inconsistent wear patterns or bumps.

2. Exercise caution where you park or store your vehicle. – Vandalism is another deal-killer for your tire warranty. A good precaution is to be careful where you park your car and/or store it when you are away. Install a car security alarm, floodlights or motion detectors around your home, and consider getting LoJack or a theft-recovery service such as OnStar.

3. Steer clear of racing and off-roading. — This is a big no-no when it comes to having your tire warranty intact. Absolutely no racing or off-roading is permitted under most tire manufacturer warranties. Maybe you can get coverage with some specialty tires that you pay an arm and a leg for, but don’t count on it. If you do decide to go off-roading and something happens to damage your tires, you’ll pretty much need to resign yourself to paying for it out-of-pocket.

4. Watch out for damage from snow chains. – Certainly if you live in an area where the snow conditions require snow chains, there’s not a whole lot you can do about the situation but use them. Just be aware that damage from snow chains to your tires isn’t covered by your tire warranty.

5. Keep purchase receipts. – Finally, in order to back up a claim – or even to get the claim started, be sure that you hang on to the original tire purchase receipts. Ditto receipts for tire rotations and alignments, as these are proof that you’ve properly maintained your tires as required by the tire manufacturer warranty.

Bottom line: How to prevent voiding your tire warranty depends on taking the necessary precautions and paying attention to where you drive.

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