Car Care: 2 Warning Signs That Your Tyres Need Replaced

Posted on: 12 January 2021

When you buy a car, you don't have to make any decisions about the tyres, as the tyres the car comes with are generally assumed to be safe and suitable for their intended use. However, this can lead to complacency around tyre safety and a poor understanding of how to check whether your tyres need to be replaced. When your tyres are in an unsuitable condition, your stopping distance can increase and grip on the road will decrease. Tyres that aren't in a roadworthy condition can make your car unsafe for you and other drivers on the road, so read on to learn about two warning signs that your tyres need to be replaced.

Tread Depth

As your tyres are always in contact with the road, their tread can wear down pretty quickly, especially if you drive long distances regularly. Treads are there to help disperse water when driving on wet roads, as dispersing water helps prevent skidding and improves grip and traction when driving. It's an offence to drive with tyres that have a tread depth below the minimum legal depth of 1.5mm, so you should check each tyre's tread depth regularly to ensure you replace your tyres before they become too worn. For comparison, the tread depth on new tyres is around 8mm, so get yourself an inexpensive tread depth gauge and keep it in your glovebox to remind you to check your tyres regularly.

Tyre Age

When you purchase tyres for your car, you probably don't think about how old the tyres are. However, tyres can sit in warehouses for years before reaching the shelves of a tyre shop, and the compounds that hold the rubber together will break down with time regardless of whether or not the tyre has been used.  Don't assume that because you bought new tyres within the last year or two and you don't drive often, that your tyres are still safe and fit for purpose. Tyres should be inspected yearly for signs of wear and tear, and they should be replaced if they are over ten years old regardless of whether they look to be in good condition. You can determine the age of a tyre by locating the identification number on the outer wall of the tyre and checking the last four digits. The last two of these digits tell you the year of manufacture and the first two digits specify the week in that year that the tyre was made.

If you'd like more information on replacing your car's tyres and selecting the right tyres for your driving needs, contact your local tyre shop.