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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wanted a second opinion on this before I spend my stimulus check on new tires. My Volt has been sitting due to the lockdown, so I've taken a closer look at my maintenance. I've noticed my front tires have been pitting, or sometimes called chunking, at the outside edges. Is this a characteristic of driving conditions, or age?
I've checked the date codes, and my front tires were made in late 2014, my left rear in 2013, and right rear in 2016. I've noticed some 'dry crack' lines along the sidewall. They still have a fair amount of tread left, but I'm concerned about dry-rot. These tires came with the car when I bought it used some 3 years and 30k miles ago. Think it's time for a new set, or can I probably get a little more life out of them? Thank you.

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Yes, the tires are done. However... what's the mileage on the car? That chunking is characteristic of a bad shock (in back) or a strut (in front).
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
87k miles. And now that you mention it, I did a brief bounce test. Rear feels normal, but the front does feel stiffer in comparison.
 

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Yah, something is going on. The bounce test doesn't always reveal a bad shock/strut. I've found it's often much harder to tell on a strut assembly equipped vehicle. Not sure why. An alignment might be in your future as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I've put in an order for new tires next week at the local Discount Tire. I'll keep watch of them to see how they wear and how the car handles, and make sure to get regular rotations. I'll definitely consider an alignment due to age and mileage of the whole car.
Thanks for the advice.
 

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You have an appointment with the experts. Ask them what is going on. Discount Tire might even want to get Goodyear involved. That first picture looks like a tire off of a wheeled skid steer, not an automobile. Could you or the previous owner have done some autocross or towing?
 

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Most places will do a free alignment check, so might as well go for it. An alignment is less than $100 in most places, so why not just get it done?
 

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I agree the tires are past due, and with the cost of a new set going on a car with 87K, I would have a complete 4 wheel alignment done, not just a check. An alignment might save you 10,000 miles of tire wear which would cost you more than the alignment

Don
 

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Those tires are in bad shape with all the chunks of tread missing. Are the roads you drive on made from sharp rocks, broken concrete chunks, big shards of glass?

When I replaced them, my 2011 tires had 70k miles on them and other than being down to 4/32" of tread depth looked new.
 

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I wanted a second opinion on this before I spend my stimulus check on new tires. My Volt has been sitting due to the lockdown, so I've taken a closer look at my maintenance. I've noticed my front tires have been pitting, or sometimes called chunking, at the outside edges. Is this a characteristic of driving conditions, or age?
I've checked the date codes, and my front tires were made in late 2014, my left rear in 2013, and right rear in 2016. I've noticed some 'dry crack' lines along the sidewall. They still have a fair amount of tread left, but I'm concerned about dry-rot. These tires came with the car when I bought it used some 3 years and 30k miles ago. Think it's time for a new set, or can I probably get a little more life out of them? Thank you.

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Tire damage like this typically occurs for one of two reasons. The first is related to suspension problems, such as a bad shock absorber making it impossible for the tire to maintain constant contact with the road. As it bounces up and down on the pavement, the force of the impact can cause tread chunking. A second common cause of chunking is related to heat — specifically, not warming up a tire before subjecting it to severe stress on an autocross or road course.

Chunked tires are not immediately dangerous, but their lifespan has been significantly shortened. The more tread that’s missing, the less grip they’ll have on the asphalt, which in turn can lead to unpredictable behavior under braking, in inclement weather or when cornering.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
This only seems to be happening to the front tires, and only recently as I've never noticed it earlier this year when I last took a good look. I keep them at 40 psi when cold. I'm starting to think it may be suspension/alignment as the tires seem to be wearing at the outside edges more than evenly across when I eyeball it at the water channels.

I've got a picture with the wheel turned out. The chunking happens at both outside edges of the tire.
IMG_20200507_155124.jpg

As far as my driving habits, I've rarely been on dirt or gravel and I try to resist the urge to pretend I'm in a rally when I do wind up on one. A few wheelspins when we got some winter ice here, but road conditions aren't bad overall. There are a few brick roads on my commute, but I don't go faster than 30mph down them. According to my State Farm Drive Safe app, I'm a good driver at not flooring it or taking turns hard.
 

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I have a ‘15 Volt w/73k miles on it. I have had two sets of the Goodyear Assurance LRR tires on it. The first lasted 38k. Both sets of tires have chunked pieces in all four tires on each set. I have had the alignment and suspension checked every year by the dealer and tires plus, both have said that the car is aligned properly and the suspension is perfect. Both also said that living in Florida the roads hear are manufactured with seashells and the surface takes a beating on the tires and causes them to chunk.

A friend of mine is a mechanic that owns his own shop. I took the vehicle to him to look at the tires and get his opinion and he said the exact same thing.
 
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