When tires are not properly inflated, is it true that fuel economy will suffer as well? How can tire pressure have any effect on the vehicle's fuel consumption?
This is not a myth but actually a fact. When the tire isn't inflated properly or doesn't have the recommended air pressure by the manufacturer, fuel efficiency is reduced due to increased rolling resistance. When the tires are a bit softer than they should be, the vehicle has to work harder; thus, it may consume more fuel. The increase in fuel consumption might not seem significant initially, but in the long run, this can add up and lead to noticeably lower fuel mileage. The proper air pressure for the tires is specified in the vehicle owner's manual. This information can also be found on the driver's side doorjamb or in the glove box.
The GMC G35 seems to lean or sway on one side when running. It's as if there's a certain pull or imbalance of some sort. I didn't really pay attention to this until it got worse, such that I'll have to hold the steering wheel hard just to make sure that the vehicle will steer straight. What could be the possible reason for this? And what could be an effective fix?
This can be brought about by a number of things, which means you'll have to check on various components. Start off by checking if the pressure on all vehicles is even. This may cause the tires to wear out unevenly or have unusual wear patterns. In which case, you may have to have the tires rotated, aside from inflating them to their specific air pressure. It could also be that the wheels are already out of alignment. These should be adjusted to certain angles. Other than the tires, the problem could also lie with the brakes. One of the brakes may be dragging or may fail to release. Trouble with steering can be traced to an ailing system component. Check the steering linkage to see if any of the parts there are already loose and need a re-tightening or if some of them are already worn out or broken.
How can I extend the tread life and prevent premature tire wear? I always take my GMC G35 on long drives and out-of-town trips. I don't want to experience tire blowouts.
To maintain long tire life and to ensure good traction, you have to maintain proper inflation. Check the tire pressure at least every month as psi drops may occur with the change in temperature, along with other factors. If the tire is under-inflated, it will be more prone to failure and blowout. This can cause severe cracking and can affect the tire load capacity. Because of low tire air pressure, there could be excessive sidewall flexing. You may also notice an increase in rolling resistance. Eventually, this can cause damage due to heat and mechanical issues. Over-inflation, on the other hand, can cause increased stiffness. You may feel some vibrations and observe that the ride isn't smooth anymore but has deteriorated. When the tires are over-inflated, there's a higher risk of impact damage. To keep wear on all tires even, have them rotated as specified by the manufacturer. Also make sure that the vehicle is aligned and that the tires/wheels are balanced.