Before I tell you when you need to replace your tires, it's important that I first tell you what the potential dangers of not replacing them are. Worn tires increase braking distances and reduce traction. When tires are more worn, you will notice longer braking distances at the same speed. This can lead to an accident in case of an emergency because you can't brake in time.
I hope you never have to deal with this, though. Also, worn tread can cause other parts of the car to wear out faster. That's why it's important to replace worn tires to improve the safety of your car.
How often should you replace your tires?
When to replace tires? What tread depth to replace tires? You may have these questions about replacing tires. Don't worry, we will tell you how to check the tread depth to know if your tires are still in the safe range. And how to determine if the tires are within the manufacturer's recommended life span.
Check the tire tread depth
Lincoln penny tread depth test, which is one of the easiest ways to measure tread depth. A coin is inserted into the tread in the center of the tire with George Washington's head pointing toward the tire. As long as the top of Lincoln's head remains blocked by the tread, then the tire continues to function properly. The grip of the tires in this condition will remain normal under adverse conditions (rain, slush and snow).
When the top of the head is flush with the tread, then the tires will be safe to drive for some time, but we recommend that you start buying new tires at this time.
Note: Please check all 4 tires, especially where they look badly worn. If any part of the tire fails to pass the test, it means you need to replace it.
It is normal for tires to wear consistently while the car is being driven, but if there is uneven tread wear it may be due to improper inflation, wheels not being mounted accurately or other conditions. In this case you need to have your car inspected by a technician.
Even if all tires pass the test, we still recommend that you check the tread every few thousand miles or periodically to avoid accidents caused by tread wear.
If you feel that the penny test results are not accurate enough, then you can use a measuring tool (such as a ruler). The accepted minimum safe tread depth is 2/32 inches, and if the measurement reaches this size, then you should replace the tire.
Determining the age of your tires
To check the age of a tire, look for the four-digit code on the side of the tire. The first two digits represent the number of weeks and the last two digits represent the year. For example, if your tire has 2214 stamped on it, it was made in the 22nd week of 2014.
Even though your tires still have sufficient tread depth, we recommend that you replace them with tires that are 6 years old or older. Prolonged exposure to the sun's UV rays and air may cause changes in the tire's structure. If discoloration, brittleness and tire cracks occur, that is a signal that the tire is breaking down. If you see any of these signs, have the tire inspected and replaced by a professional immediately.
Can you replace just one tire?
In the event of a blowout, you may only want to replace the tire that failed. However, replacing just one tire can result in different tread between the tires, which can lead to irregular tire wear and excessive driveline wear. It is highly recommended that you replace at least the opposite matching tire at the same time, replacing both front tires or both rear tires. All-wheel drive cars are an exception.
If you want better handling while driving, we recommend that you replace the tires with a wheel spacer at the same time. Wheel spacers increase the spacing between the two wheels, giving you a better driving experience.
While replacing your tires before they are legally worn out may not be the most economical way. But compared to the cost of repairing your car due to worn out tires, I think replacing your tires early is a most reasonable option.