When to Replace Tires

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How Do I Know It’s Time to Replace My Tires?

Why is it Important to Inspect Your Tires Periodically?


Tires are an important factor in your car’s safety in good — and bad — weather conditions. Damaged or worn tires can increase the risk of an accident or breakdown that leaves you stranded. Tires that show damage or wear should be replaced immediately. Fortunately, tires are one of the simplest parts of your car to inspect and have serviced.


Step-By-Step How to Inspect Your Tires

Tap each step to check off which ones you've completed

  1. Inspect the tread depth and check for cracked treads.

    Place a penny into the tire tread with Abe Lincoln’s head upside down and facing you. If you can see the top of Abe’s head (his hairline), then it’s time to replace your tires. This is sometimes called the 2/32” rule. If your tire has tread wear indicators, you should be sure to inspect these.

  2. Inspect the tread pattern

    Inspect the contact surface of the tire, determining if the wear patternis even. Tires that show uneven wear may help diagnose a maintenance or mechanical problem.

  3. Inspect the sidewall

    Over and under inflation can damage the sidewall, in addition to abrasions while driving (contact with curbs, etc.).

  4. Repeat these steps for all four tires.
  5. Additional Tips:
    1. Different wear patterns mean different things
    2. Rapid wear at the center of the tread may indicate over-inflation
    3. Rapid wear at the shoulder (outer areas) of the tread may indicate under-inflation
    4. Wear along one edge may indicate steering or suspension problems, or be caused by excessive speed while cornering.
    5. Bald spots or uneven wear patterns at the edge of the tire may indicate an unbalanced wheel, or mechanical issues with your suspension.
    6. Tread wear indicators usually take the form of nubs or bars between tread patterns, but the design varies by manufacturer.

Tire Replacement Videos {{ !ctrl.make ? 'by Car' : 'for Your ' + ctrl.make.nm }}

How Do I Know It’s Time to Replace My Tires?

Why is it Important to Inspect Your Tires Periodically?


Tires are an important factor in your car’s safety in good — and bad — weather conditions. Damaged or worn tires can increase the risk of an accident or breakdown that leaves you stranded. Tires that show damage or wear should be replaced immediately. Fortunately, tires are one of the simplest parts of your car to inspect and have serviced.


What Tools Do I Need to Inspect My Tires


You really only need your eyeballs and a little bit of knowledge, although sometimes a penny is handy to gauge tread depth