As a vehicle owner, you should know when to replace your tires. Neglecting the condition of your tires can put your life, and the life of those around you, at risk. Plus, it can accelerate wear and cause needless damage to your vehicle.
Fortunately, if you're aware of the behaviors and situations that can affect the longevity of your vehicle tires, you won’t have to replace them often. So, when possible, avoid driving on rugged roads, driving excessively and driving in inclement weather. Additionally, choose tires that the manufacturer recommends, and prepare them for changing seasons, especially if you’re in an area that experiences heavy snow and rain.
Nevertheless, regardless of how and where you drive, evaluate your tires periodically to determine when it’s time to replace them. Here are three common ways to do so.
1. Do the coin test on your tire tread
This is an effective way to determine the tread depth of your tires. All you need is a quarter. Insert it into the tread in the center of your tire, and turn the coin upside down so the president’s head is pointed toward the vehicle tire. If the top of Washington's head disappears in the tread gap, your tires are still in good condition. However, if you can see all of his head, or if there is a gap between the tire and his head, it's time to replace your tires.
Specifically, when your vehicle tire tread reaches less than 4/32 inches, you will want to look for new ones.
2. Evaluate the tire manufacture date
Generally, after six years, you'll want to replace your tires no matter their condition. Why? Even if your tires look great, the rubber material naturally degrades over time. So at any moment, they could break down. You will find the manufacture date on the vehicle tire wall. There will be a four-digit Department of Transportation code. The first two numbers of that code designate the week that the tire was made, and the last two digits, the year. So the tire pictured has the code 2517 meaning this tire was manufactured on the 25th week of 2017.
3. Thoroughly review tire quality
This is the easiest way to determine when to replace your tires. Take a close look at them for any signs of damage or wear. Specifically, check for uneven tread wear, cracks, bulges, sidewall punctures and defects. Practically all tires today are manufactured with tread wear indicators. These are rubber bars molded parallel across the main tread grooves. If they are close to the surface, it is time to replace the tire.
Dimples or indentations on the tire often aren't cause for alarm, but punctures and cuts usually are. Make sure that any wear and tear on your tires isn't affecting air pressure either.
Bonus tip! Seek a professional's help to replace your tires
You can also determine if you need to replace your tires by checking with your auto service technician. They can measure the tread depth and look at your vehicle’s inspection report or records. These reports will often include the history of your tires, such as the purchase date.
If you need a qualified technician to look at your vehicle tires, or if you’re in search of a reliable vehicle, consider Mike Duman Auto Superstore. We’ve been in business for over 40 years and have helped thousands of drivers in the area optimize their vehicles for the road. We have competitive prices and industry-trained technicians ready to address your auto concerns.