How and Why to Rotate Your Tires

Tire rotation is one form of maintenance for the tires which help your car move from point A to Sarasota. This is the why: maintenance. Let’s have a detailed look at the how-to for rotating your tires.

Rotating Your Tires

Rotating your tires should follow the rotation patterns as recommended by The Tire and Rim Association, Inc. But before that, it is wise to recognize and acknowledge the drivetrain of your vehicle (AWD vs RWD vs 4WD vs FWD), the size of your spare tire(s), the sizes of the tires in front axle of your vehicle and in the rear axle, plus whether your tires can be moved in all directions (non-directional) or if it requires rotation per specified direction (directional). 


Directional Tires

For directional tires, ensure you rotate your tires on the same side of the vehicle (for instance, the front tire on the left side of the vehicle can be rotated to the rear axle but not to the right side of the vehicle). 

If your tire sizes are different, you will have to approach it differently by rotating only with the tires with the same size; also, in this scenario, it will be a rear-to-rear axle rotation and a front-to-front axle rotation only.

Non-Directional Tires

For 4WD and RWD drivetrain vehicles with a full-size spare tire: 

  • Rotate the rear right axle tire with the spare tire;
  • Rotate the current rear-axle tires to the front axle;
  • Diagonally rotate the front right axle tire to the rear axle;
  • The front left axle tire should automatically become your new spare tire.

For FWD drivetrain vehicles, work with the X-pattern rotation or the Forward-Cross rotation:

  • Going with X-Pattern, diagonally rotate the rear right tire to the front left axle and vice-versa, and diagonally rotate the front right tire to the rear left axle and vice-versa.
  • Going with Forward-Cross, diagonally rotate all the tires and/or move the front axle tires to the rear axle. (This rotation style also applies to FWD drivetrain vehicles with non-directional tires of the same size with a full-size spare tire; in this case, the front right axle tire becomes the new full-size spare tire).

For AWD, RWD and 4WD drivetrain vehicles, go with the Rearward-Cross rotation pattern:

  • Diagonally rotate the front tires to the rear axle. Then, move the rear axle tires on the same exact position to the front axle – on the same side of the vehicle.

If you prefer to not rotate your tires in a DIY fashion, let’s handle that for you at 6503 Gateway Avenue in Sarasota. We are Car Care Connection, Sarasota’s Total Car Care Experts, available Monday through Friday, from 8am – 5pm but we also accept night drops. Call us today at 941-924-6199 for more information.

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