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Feathering wear on a tyre's tread

Tyre Feathering - What Is It? Causes? How To Prevent It?

Do you notice uneven wear patterns on your car’s tyres? One common issue that many drivers encounter is tyre feathering.

In this article, we’ll delve into its details, explore its causes, address whether it’s a problem, and provide effective strategies to prevent it.

What Is Tyre Feathering?

Tyre feathering refers to the irregular wear pattern that occurs when the tread blocks on a tyre wear down unevenly.

This results in one side of the tread blocks being smoother and rounded, resembling the edge of a feather, while the opposite side remains sharp and well-defined.

This uneven wear is commonly seen on the front tyres of vehicles and can compromise the tyre’s performance and longevity.

Causes Of Tyre Feathering

Improper Wheel Alignment

When the wheels are not aligned correctly, they can exert unequal pressure on the tyres, causing them to wear unevenly.

Incorrect Tyre Inflation

When tyres are underinflated, the outer edges of the tread bear more weight, resulting in uneven wear. Conversely, overinflated tyres tend to wear down the centre of the tread faster.

Worn or Faulty Suspension Components

Worn or faulty suspension components, such as shock absorbers, struts, and bushings, can disrupt the even distribution of weight on the tyres.

Is It A Problem?

Yes, tyre feathering is indeed a problem that can impact your vehicle’s performance, safety, and overall driving experience.

Feathered tyres have reduced traction, especially in wet or slippery conditions, which can compromise braking and cornering capabilities.

How To Prevent Tyre Feathering

Regular Wheel Alignment

Schedule regular wheel alignment checks to ensure that your vehicle’s wheels are properly aligned. This will help distribute weight evenly across the tyres, reducing the risk of feathering.

Proper Tyre Inflation

Frequently check and maintain proper tyre inflation according to your vehicle manufacturer’s recommendations. This simple step can significantly extend tyre life and prevent uneven wear.

Suspension Inspection

Include suspension system inspections as part of your vehicle’s maintenance routine. Timely replacement of worn or damaged components will help maintain proper weight distribution on the tyres.

Gentle Driving

Avoid abrupt starts, stops, and sharp turns, as aggressive driving can contribute to uneven tyre wear. Practise gentle driving habits to minimise the strain on your tyres.


Tyre feathering is a common issue that can lead to uneven wear, compromised safety, and reduced fuel efficiency.

Regular wheel alignment, proper tyre inflation, and attentive driving habits are key to keeping feathering at bay.

Remember, a little maintenance goes a long way in preserving the health of your tyres.

Louis from Tyre Geek


I'm Louis, an engineer passionate about helping Australians choose better tyres for their vehicles!