How To Check Tire Tread With a Penny?

Are you thinking of buying used tires for your car? If you think it’s high time to change your wheels, you first need to make sure you’re making the right choice and pay attention to some important details. Still hesitating: how can you spot signs of wear or deterioration? To find out if you need to replace your tires, this simple test can help you with a coin and save you a lot of inconvenience later.

Buying used tires: Details to consider

Many drivers buy used tires rather than new ones to save money. However, some are victims of their ignorance and buy too worn and inferior equipment that needs to be replaced quickly. This inevitably comes at an additional cost.

Therefore, before buying it, it is important to pay attention to a basic parameter. And this concerns, first of all, the age of the tire. Most manufacturers warn that after about six years of frequent use, the rubber begins to crumble and may break. After 10 years, driving a car becomes too risky. But how do you check the age of a tire? Since 2000, every tire manufactured has an embossed number indicating the year of manufacture. These are the last four digits stamped on the side, which of course you have to learn to read. For example, the number 4318 means the tire was manufactured in the 43rd week of 2018. Also, make sure there are no air bubbles or stains on the seams.

Remember, even if it “appears” to be in good condition, a discount tire can hide dark secrets if you don’t do your homework. Some defects are not visible to the naked eye. Maybe it’s taken a lot of knocks in the past and doesn’t work as well as it looks. To avoid unpleasant surprises after a few days, we strongly advise you to buy it from someone you trust or have a specialist in the field by your side who can better assess it.

Good to know: Never buy a used tire that does not comply with the legal standards. According to article 2.1 of the decree that refers to tires, the tread must contain a series of essential information, in particular the date of manufacture, the manufacturer’s mark, the load capacity, the dimension and other inscriptions.

How do you know when tires need to be replaced with new ones?

Generally, new tires have a tread depth of up to 10/32- 11/32 inches. Absolutely, experts advise a tread depth of at least 5/32 inches for winter tires and 1/8 inches for summer tires.

But how do you measure the tread and make sure it has the right depth? Thanks to this popular trick that will give you an indication of the wear on your wheels. Take a coin and insert it into the groove of the tire. If you notice that the silver outer rim (about 1/8 inches) remains clearly visible on the surface, it is high time to change the tire. You can do this at various points around the circumference of the tire. This method works for tires you already own as well as for those you want to buy.

Note: The other, even safer method is, of course, to use a tread-specific depth gauge.

Other signs of wear or deterioration may indicate that your car’s tires need to be replaced. Here are a few:

A possible tire blowout or serious damage.

Despite the sturdiness of your car tires, unfortunately, sometimes punctures are irreparable. In this case, you have no choice but to repair or urgently replace the wheel. On the road, watch out for potholes, curbs and other elements that can seriously affect your tires.

Abnormal tread wear

Some signs are sometimes obvious and easy to spot. That’s why you need to keep a close eye on your tires: If you notice asymmetrical wear, wear in the center or on the edges of the tread, you should consider changing them. These symptoms are most likely due to a mechanical problem, such as a balance, toe, transmission or suspension issue. However, it can also be caused by insufficient pressure. Therefore, it is important to check the manufacturer’s recommended pressure at least once a month, especially before long trips.

Steering wheel vibrations

While driving, steering wheel vibrations are one of the most annoying problems a driver can face. They are usually detected above 55 miles/h, but can become stronger as speed increases. For the driver, this means stress, but most importantly, dangers to their safety. You should know that the origin of these annoying vibrations is generally related to the tires themselves. For example, if they are misaligned, they will not have a balanced grip on the ground and the ride will not be safe or optimal.

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