Squealing tires only when turning from stop

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Last few weeks I've noticed more and more on my Highlander (treads are down to 4-6/32 on each of the tires--Continental AT special, Control Contact Tour) that when I stop, and then turn sharply to the left or right, that there will be a very brief squealing sound, no more than half a second. I don't notice this when going straight from a full stop, or any other time.

Does this indicate aging or wearing down of the treads? Or could this happen at any point in the tire's life?

I am expecting to replace the tires this fall anyways, I just ask myself this question every time I hear the squeal.
 

paulri

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Let me make sure I understand your point--you are suggesting that newer tires would squirm and not squeal; but now that the treads are more worn down, they're not squirming any more?

I suppose so. I have not detected any slippage at all with these tires--no reason to think that they aren't gripping the road as well as they always have.
 
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New tires are more compliant and softer, accommodating for and absorbing turning forces. When the tread blocks get worn down and the rubber gets harder, they're less compliant and more prone to emitting scrubbing and squealing noises. Tread blocks do squirm under the weight of your vehicle, this is why certain race participants shave brand new tires to go racing. They want all the grip of that soft new rubber, without tread block squirm.
 

paulri

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So this is a sign that the rubber has degraded. OK well its good that I'm set to replace them in a few months.

New tires are more compliant and softer, accommodating for and absorbing turning forces. When the tread blocks get worn down and the rubber gets harder, they're less compliant and more prone to emitting scrubbing and squealing noises. Tread blocks do squirm under the weight of your vehicle, this is why certain race participants shave brand new tires to go racing. They want all the grip of that soft new rubber, without tread block squirm.
 
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Maybe you're on the gas more.

But your tires are getting older.

Maybe find a deserted road and do a panic stop to see how they react. I bet they'll still be surprisingly good.
 

paulri

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Yesterday I went through stop n go traffic in the Los Angeles area on city streets & freeway, the tires showed no signs of a loss of braking distance so I think they will be good to go until this fall.
 
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