Tire Concerns: Proper tires?
by Jerry Cox
(Davison, MI 48423)
I have a 1999 Chevy S10 Extended Cab. I recently needed new tires. The dealer suggested "GENERAL ALTIMAX RT" 21/70R-15. Which I bought and had installed. I have put 5,000 miles on the tires and had them back to the dealer 3 times for balance & rotate, due to a vibration, which accures @ 35mph. sometimes worse than others. I have had the truck into my mechanic and he has checked all the U-joints and drive shaft. He says it is the tires. I recently found out that the General Altimax RT are for passenger cars, could this be my problem. Are the tires safe for my truck?
I am not personally familiar with the General Altimax RT tire but in general terms tires which are designed for light trucks are made to support higher loads than passenger car tires and it is possible that you may have damaged the structure of the tires by carrying heavier weight that they were designed to use.
Another possibility is that there could be a structural defect in one of the tires which is causing the vibration. Since you've been back to the dealer on several occasions I'm wondering if you have ever discussed the possibility of making a claim for defective tires, or arranging for a change of tires with some compensation since, as you say, they recommended these tires which may not be suitable for your vehicle.
It's hard to say whether they are safe to use on your vehicle since I cannot determine the extent of the the damage, if any. But if their load rating is not suitable for they use you are giving them, then you should definitely be looking for other tires.