To be frank, attempting to determine the precise time that you need new tires is like winning the lottery. Extremely difficult. Still, there are ways to measure a vague timeframe of when it’s necessary to consider buying new tires. What we can be certain of is that the more wear and tear a tire undergoes, the closer is gets being in a state of high-risk. The original purpose of a tire tread’s design is to reroute the liquids and debris from underneath the tire to improve traction of a wet surface. When a tire gets worn down, the tread’s design is no longer effective, which put the driver of that vehicle in danger. As soon as a tire wears down to 1/16th of an inch, it is deemed as undependable. Many professionals suggest that you don’t wait that long to get new tires because you will be putting your safety at risk.
There are various factors that control the lifespan of a tire, such as:
- Driving style
- Conditions of the road
- Driver’s attentiveness to their tires
- Type of tire
The Penny Test
There are several obvious signs you need new tires. For example, if your tires are balled, your tire sidewalls have cracks or gouges, or you have cords showing through the rubber on your tires, you need new tires, no doubt about it, because your tires are unsafe for driving and will ultimately result in tire failure. Rather than wait until your tires are dangerously worn out, it’s better to get new tires as soon as they hit 2/32 inches, which you can test with a penny. If you can see all of Lincoln’s head above your tire tread (with his head facing down), your tread is below the 2/32” mark, and you need new tires.
Popularly known as the penny test, testing your tires treads will cost you a small amount of one penny. And the best part is that you get to keep the penny after! You’ll insert the penny into a tread groove and repeat this process for several tread grooves. The way that you know the tire tread are worn and unsafe is if the top of Lincoln’s head is showing. In this scenario, you will want to replace your tires as soon as possible. However, if part of Lincoln’s head is covered by the tread each time, then you have about 2/32 of an inch remaining and don’t need new tires as urgently.
If you have questions about new tires, tire repair, or whether you need a wheel alignment, please call our auto repair shop. Our tire techs are extremely knowledgeable when it comes to making new tire recommendations and handling tire repairs. For wheel alignments, we use state-of-the-art equipment and strictly adhere to your vehicle manufacturer’s alignment specifications. You can trust us to do right by you and your tires.