How do you know when it is time to replace car tires? There are certain signs to look for when it comes to the wear and tear of tires. Replacing a tire before it causes damage can save you on costly expenses. You can also save yourself and your passengers from injury and fatalities that happen due to accidents caused by bad tires. If you want to save some time and assess whether you need to replace your car ties right away, we can help. Take a look at our guide below to help you to tell when it’s time to replace car tires.
Bulges or Blisters
Bulges and blisters on tires are quite common as the surface ages and begin to show signs of tire wear. If this happens, your tire can blow out or crack. Bulges and blisters are like a crack on a windscreen – they can grow and lead to further issues and costs later on so it should be immediately fixed as soon as it is noticed.
You cannot avoid bulges and blisters and some are not repairable. You can however take precautions until you get a chance to replace your tire so that you can avoid blowouts. Drive slowly and avoid potholes until you can get a new set of tires. Be sure to drive slowly and take your vehicle to your nearest tire repair shop or auto dealership.
Worn Tire Tread
Unfortunately, not all tires last forever. Tire tread experiences wear and tear as it ages. With this wear and tear, comes the risk for drivers and passengers who rely on tires to safely get them to their destination. Poor tread wear can lead to difficulties controlling the vehicle, especially during harsh weather conditions or sharp turns. It can also affect other parts of your car and bring down the value of your vehicle. It is also worth noting that in Canada, car owners have to legally follow the recommended minimum of 1.6 mm tread depth (with some provinces following stricter rules). It is, therefore, crucial to check if you are driving with the correct tire treads.
The penny test is a popular method for quickly checking tire tread. It involves placing a penny into the grooves of the tire. Place the penny headfirst and if you see the top of Lincoln’s head, it is an indication that your treads are worn out. For Canadians, this method is done with Queen Elizabeth’s crown facing down. If you can see the top of the Queen’s crown, your tire needs to be replaced. If only part of the coin is covered, you probably have more inches remaining. In this case, you likely don’t need new tires. An at-home tire test may not be 100% accurate and you may still need to change your tires as worn-out treads are not the only indication of damage you should be looking for.
Does the age of the tires matter? Absolutely. Old tires are more prone to a risk of damage than newer tires. Vehicle owners should have their tires inspected once a year, especially after the 6th year of the manufactured date. Keeping it any longer than this without inspection and maintenance is going to increase the risk of wear and tear. The period for inspections will depend on the tire. It is ideal if you check the manufacturer’s recommendation or ask a professional for advice.
After 10 years, you are likely going to be needing a new set of tires. Most manufacturers recommend the 10-year rule for new tires, even if your tires appear to be in good condition. The recommendation does not just apply to your working tires, but your backup and spare tires too as tires deteriorate even when not in use.
Some tires can be identified with their Tire Identification Number (also known as the DOT in some provinces). The serial code can be used to determine tire age and production date. To check this, look at the last four digits which will give you the week and year that the tire was manufactured. All tires should come with this serial number but sometimes it is installed in such a manner that it is easy to view. A professional auto mechanic can help you determine the age of your tires should you require this information.
Tips on replacing tires
- It is better to replace all four tires at once (rather than just a damaged tire). Tires need to be the same so that you can have good control of your vehicle. If you have different or mismatched tires, you are compromising the surface between you and the road.
- If you cannot afford to replace all tires at once, choose a similar tire to your existing tires.
- If you are unsure about the correct tire for your vehicle, consult an expert or check your vehicle’s owner’s manual.
- Always try to purchase new tires as used tires always come with a risk. They may have existing issues that you cannot see. You may also have difficulty determining its age. It may be cheaper, but you’ll have to replace them sooner than if you bought a new tire – leading to additional costs.
- Check for tire recalls ensuring that the tire used is still in good working condition.
It is important to consult an expert when replacing your car tires. A dealer or authorized professional can ensure your tires are checked, balanced, repaired, and replaced if needed. They have the expertise to arrange the tires that best suit your vehicle. SPECIAL INTEREST AUTOMOBILES can arrange everything you need when it comes to replacing your car tires. We are committed to your safety and offer tire services to ensure that you receive only the best tires and maintenance for your vehicle. You can visit our showrooms for help with tire rotation, flat repairs, tire balancing, and purchase brand-new rims.
Replace car tires easily by giving our professional auto service team a call today!