Tire Rotation - Balance Necessary? - Drive Accord Honda Forums | radio-pro.ru
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post #1 of 13 Old 07-15-2009, 06:57 AM Thread Starter
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Tire Rotation - Balance Necessary?

I need to get my tires rotated and I remember the last mechanic shop I went to they said something about having to get a wheel balance if I get a rotation. While I'm sure it wouldn't hurt is it really necessary? I do have custom 19" wheels if they makes any difference.


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post #2 of 13 Old 07-15-2009, 07:02 AM
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You don't need to balance the tires unless it needs it. You'll be fine just rotating the tires only. Are you doing it your self?


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post #3 of 13 Old 07-15-2009, 07:41 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Honda247 View Post
You don't need to balance the tires unless it needs it. You'll be fine just rotating the tires only. Are you doing it your self?
No I was going to the honda dealership after work today for an oil change and realized I have not rotated my tires in quite some time, I figured I would just have it done while I'm there.

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post #4 of 13 Old 07-15-2009, 07:50 AM
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Cool, just remember if you tire don't shake when going over 55 or 65 MPH then you don't need a balance. I had my stock tire for a year and not once did I need a balance. But since I have new tires and the shop where I got my tires from does rotaions and balancing for free, I don't have to worry.

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post #5 of 13 Old 07-15-2009, 08:09 AM Thread Starter
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Balance for free? Wow as far as I know theres alot of work that goes into that, you have to pull the tire off the rim. Thanks for the input anyhow!

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post #6 of 13 Old 07-15-2009, 08:17 AM
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In general, if the shop did a good job of balancing all 4 wheel/tire combos (and made sure all 4 spun well/smooth), rotating shouldn't cause an issue. Sometimes a shop will put the "worse" tires on the rear so you don't feel any vibraiton issues, but when you rotate those to the front it might bring a vibration along with the rotation. For factory tires this is less prevalent. But overall, do the rotation and see how they feel on the highway. They will feel "different" for a while as you'll have a different wear pattern on the front wheels, but they settle in after a while.

I'm a firm advocate that you don't constantly rebalance wheels, because the wear/tear on the weights being removed/replaced on the rim isn't good for the wheels themselves - and in normal use, a wheel/tire combo doesn't go out of balance (unless you flat-spot the tires by doing power-slides with the P-brake locked) - or you start to spin the wheels inside the tires by doing full-throttle quarter miles or something like that. - so just rotate and enjoy!

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post #7 of 13 Old 07-15-2009, 11:19 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the thorough response Andy!

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post #8 of 13 Old 07-15-2009, 01:27 PM
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I agree that a rebalance is not needed every rotation. Having said that, I just got my new tires at America's Tire last week, and their installed price includes lifetime repair, rotation, and balance. I really like these guys and have used them for my past three cars. Heck, they even put tire dressing on your new shoes.

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post #9 of 13 Old 07-16-2009, 02:25 PM
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On my 07 with 77,000 I have never had the OEM tires balanced and they are as smooth as always....no vibrations at all...
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post #10 of 13 Old 07-17-2009, 08:27 AM
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I agree with the others about the balancing not being neccessary. But the odd thing is the local Honda dealer here wants to balance the wheels everytime they rotate the tires. So a tire rotation is $35.

I really like this dealer alot. I've known the service mgr for yrs along with some of the other service advisors. They will tell me what things are a waste of money and all their other service has been very good. I can see a shady dealer wanting to do this but like I said this dealer has been top notch with everything else.
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post #11 of 13 Old 07-17-2009, 09:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DreamTFK View Post
Balance for free? Wow as far as I know theres alot of work that goes into that, you have to pull the tire off the rim. Thanks for the input anyhow!

.....when I worked at a gas station during college, we balanced the tire/wheel as a unit (that means together, mounted - - - not off the rim).

Has the technology changed since I got my Baccalaureate.........?


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post #12 of 13 Old 07-17-2009, 10:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DreamTFK View Post
I need to get my tires rotated and I remember the last mechanic shop I went to they said something about having to get a wheel balance if I get a rotation. While I'm sure it wouldn't hurt is it really necessary? I do have custom 19" wheels if they makes any difference.
If your tires are uni-directional you can only rotate your tires front to back, not side to side. To rotate them side to side, you will have to have the tires removed from the wheels, placed on the wheel in the desired direction, and then (re)balanced.
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post #13 of 13 Old 08-03-2009, 08:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ezshift5 View Post
.....when I worked at a gas station during college, we balanced the tire/wheel as a unit (that means together, mounted - - - not off the rim).

Has the technology changed since I got my Baccalaureate.........?


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Not anytime that I've ever had my tires balanced. I'm not sure how you'd balance a tire off the rim.

Unless someone knows something different than I do, balancing involves placing small weights inside the edge of the rim to counter and thin spots in the rubber compound, which can cause vibrating at high speeds. Or sometimes you can get something wedged in the edge of the rim, which would have the same effect by causing that part of the tire to be heavier than the rest. Or there's simply the uneven wear on the tread, or even the loss of an existing weight from a previous balance. Hence why it's best to check the balance at every rotation.

Balancing doesn't require constantly taking the tire off the rim; they just put the entire wheel/tire unit in a machine that spins it to check for vibration, to isolate any part of the tire that's out of whack. If it's not out of balance, no further adjustment is done, so nothing to weaken or damage the tire, even over time.

So really when the garage says they're "balancing" the tire, what they're really doing is verifying the balance and correcting it if it needs it, but if the tire checks out, there's no actual balancing that's done. Sort of like checking the oil - if your levels are okay and it looks clean, nothing else needs to be done except a check. Not sure why they don't just call it "checking the balance," since that's really what's happening; guess they figure there's enough reasons to throw a tire out of whack that most likely some balancing will ultimately be necessary.

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