Knowing when to replace old tires can be difference between a comfortable tire change at home and an emergency on the side of the road. Thankfully, you can figure out for yourself when it’s time to spring for a new tire. Here are three simple tips to help you know when the time has come.
Pro Tip #1: Use the Classic Thread Test
Some newer tire models come with a built in bar indicator to let you know when your treads are worn down. There’s no easier way to test out your threads however, than the classic Penny Test. All you have to do is grab a penny and insert Abraham Lincoln head first into the thread of each tire. If Abe’s head starts to disappear, the tread is still good. If Lincoln’s head is completely visible, you need to look for a replacement tire.
Pro Tip #2: Examine Your Manufacturing Date
Did you know that tires can expire? It may sound crazy, but even unused tires can (and do) expire after six years. Check the manufacturing date on the wall of your tires; look for a four digit code. The last two digits represent the manufacturing year, and the first two represent the week of that year. Always keep in mind: expired tires are much more likely to fail.
Pro Tip #3: Check Out Your Tire’s Sidewalls
Everybody tells you to look at the threads, but not so many tell you to examine your tire’s sidewall. Be wary of any large cracks or bulges in the sidewall, as this can mean your tire isn’t far from failing. Protect yourself from ending up on the side of the highway by having your tire replaced (if you spot this damage).
Be sure to follow these tips when it comes time to replace old tires. For more details on how to care for your car, such as checking your fluids, talk with one of our experts at (424) 283-4303, or check out our other articles on car maintenance.