There are some things that you can squeeze every last bit of usefulness out of before you replace, but tires should not be one of them. If you wait too long to get new tires, you risk putting yourself, your family and other motorists in danger, as there will not be enough tread remaining to grip the road, causing you to potentially lose control of your vehicle.
- Vibration- It is not normal to feel vibrations when you are driving down the road. If you are noticing shaking, it is wise to have the tires checked out ASAP.
- Age- When you buy new tires, you’ll be told what the tread wear warranty is. This is the number of miles that the tire manufacturer expects the tires to perform properly. If you have more miles on your tires than this number, they should be inspected, as they are nearing the end of their expected lifetime.
- Sidewall Issues- The sidewalls can develop cracks, gouges, blisters, bulges, or other problems that can impact the safety of the tire regardless of the number of miles on it or the tread remaining.
- Lack of Tread- Check each tire all the way around looking for bald areas, cords showing, or a visible wear bar. If you notice wear in one place but not others, you may need an alignment and/or tire balancing. If it has gone on for too long, the tire may be too damaged to save and new tires are needed. The wear bar shows at 2/32” and tires are considered bald at 0/32”, but you should never let it get that far. A good way to test is to put a penny into the grove with Lincoln’s head facing down. If you can see the entire head, you need new tires.
- Using Spare Tire- Vehicles today come with a spare tire that is not intended to be used indefinitely. They do not last for many miles and do not provide the same amount of traction and vehicle control. Only use the spare tire to get you to the tire store.
- Minimal Use- If you do not drive often, you cannot go by the mileage age of the tires. Tires can also go bad just sitting around. Consider the mileage warranty and divide by average mileage of 12,000 to 15,000 per year to find out how many years your tires can potentially last. If it has been longer, get them checked out, or you could experience a blowout.