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The Hood Magazine

When to Replace Tires

Jul 28, 2020 ● By Discount Tire
By: Discount Tires

Summer is coming to a close and that can only mean one thing: it’s back to school time! As you run through your back-to-school checklist make sure you remember the importance of safe tires. Whether you’re running the carpooling or need a reliable vehicle for your college-bound young adult, ensuring you get the best start to the new school year means knowing if it’s time to replace your tires.

Here are some factors to consider that will help determine when it’s time to replace your tires:

Irregular Tread Wear It’s normal for the tread of your tires to gradually become shallower and performance to change as they’re used. However, if one of your tires appears to be wearing down faster than the others, it’s most likely time for a regular tire rotation to address the uneven wear. Ignoring uneven tire wear for too long can increase the chance of degraded performance and ride comfort, hydroplaning, even tire failure when driving at highway speeds. You can easily check your tread depth by performing the penny test: simply stick a penny into the tread groove with Lincoln’s head upside down. If Lincoln’s head is visible, it’s time to replace those tires.

Bulging and Bubbling Tires Have you ever seen a tire with a lump protruding from the sidewall? These bubbles or bulges are usually caused by impact damage. When a tire hits a sharp object in the road, the force from the weight and speed of the vehicle is focused in the small area of contact. This compresses the tire enough that the inside of the sidewall is pinched and damaged, causing a small hole on the inside tire-liner layer. Sidewall bubbles or bulges indicate there is structural damage to the tire that cannot be repaired. If you notice a bubble on one of your tires, use your spare until you can get a replacement.

Tire Age Your vehicle will eventually need new tires, even if you don’t do much driving. The average life of a tire is determined by the conditions they're exposed to – temperature changes, sun exposure, usage, and maintenance all contribute to the rate at which a tire ages. Discount Tire recommends that your tires be changed at least every six years, even under the most minimal use. This ensures that your tires haven’t degraded without your knowledge.

Tire Mileage It almost goes without saying, but the more miles on your tires, the faster they’ll need to be replaced. Proper and timely tire maintenance is crucial to safety. Rotate your tires every 6,000-8,000 miles to help prolong tread life. If you commute or drive frequently, logging over 12,000 miles per year, your tread may wear down to an unusable level within three to four years. Replacing your tires before they show any of the signs mentioned above is a great way to save yourself from expensive repair costs and overall inconvenience.