Tire Pressure/Tread Wear

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by Maine Pilot, Sep 9, 2011.

  1. dennisrosson

    dennisrosson New Member

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    I have an 06 Prius with 130,000 miles on it. I was experiencing excessively premature wear and severe cupping on the rear tires only. About two years ago I spent many hours on this forum reading about the rear tire problem. Hundreds of people were seeing the same thing. People reported spending a boatload of money on high dollar tires with no satisfaction. The problem cannot be cured with expensive tires. Every time I put on new tires they would last from 5,000 to 11,000 miles and would have such severe flat spots the thumping would run you out of the car. I finally cured the problem by putting on wider tires. The standard size is P185/65R/15. This tire is evidently far too narrow. I now use a P205/60R/15. This is two sizes wider. The overall diameter remains the same so you will experience no speedometer change or shift point problems. These tires now have about 30,000 miles with absolutely no wear problems. The thing that amazes me is some people have the problem and some don't. I wish I was smart enough to figure out why, but I am not. By the way, these are not high dollar tires, I spent about $55 per tire on them. If you are experiencing this problem, try this cure, I am convinced it will solve the problem for you.
     
  2. Helio

    Helio Member

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    Unfortunately I am using 205/55/16. If you just looked at the tires you would never know there was something wrong, unless of course you rode in the car and were listening to the howling. Even the mechanic thought they looked fine until he ran his hand across the tread. I can't even find this kind of wear pattern documented anywhere I've searched.
     
  3. mainerinexile

    mainerinexile No longer in exile!

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    Did you have a drop in mpg when you went to a wider tire?
     
  4. dennisrosson

    dennisrosson New Member

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    No, I have never got the real high mileage that some claim. My mileage remains the same at 40 to 43 mpg.
     
  5. mabordo

    mabordo Junior Member

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    I'm thinking of getting TPs. So it looks like you are pleased with them? No drop in mpg?
     
  6. richard schumacher

    richard schumacher shortbus driver

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    Cupping => bad alignment. And chronic 40 MPG? Sounds like there's a problem, possibly related.
     
  7. xs650

    xs650 Senior Member

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    Could be alignment, but...

    Cupping is often a mystery problem, but usually traced to something loose like worn joints or valving in shock absorbers. It is effectively the result of a mechanical tuned circuit that resonates and causes wear in regular sports on the tire.. You can hide the problem by changing the tuned circuit (wider tires with different properties, for instance) but it will often return unless the root cause is fixed.

    Whatever is loose or sloppy could also be the source of an alignment problem.:rockon:
     
  8. tanglefoot

    tanglefoot Whee!

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    I've always run 44/42 psi and when I replaced the Integrities, they were worn more on the shoulders than in the center. Maybe I should have upped the pressure more. :D No cupping though.

    I like higher tire pressure for snow driving. The extra ground pressure under the tire footprints seems to hold on to the surface and pack the snow into the tread better.
     
  9. eldoprius

    eldoprius Junior Member

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    I have the same problem... 11000 on the Ecopia and they started to howl upon rotation. They found that the tire was wearing on the inside. This was from the tires that had just been moved to the front in the rotation. Prior to the rotation no noise. I purchased them at COSTCO and they said it had to be a car problem. The Bridgestone rep. said has to be a car problem. I took it to my Toyota dealer who did a complete alignment and inspection of everything, struts etc. Car is fine and everything within specifications. COSTCO said they will replace and prorate the wear for a new set but if it happens again I am on my own. I am not sure if this will help me. At least the howl will be gone but if this is a design issue or something else it will probably come back. The car came with Good Year which the dealer took off and put on Michelin because they were unsafe in grooved roads. The Toyota factory guy drove it with me in the car and said we will give you new tires after driving a little over a mile... that bad.

    The Michelin were good except for noise, you had to have the radio 3/4 volume to hear but they were fine otherwise. I put Bridgestone on after good recommendations on this Prius Chat and they were much quieter but now a new problem. Does anyone have any suggestions???
     
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