Ever wondered about the perfect time to swap out your car tires? It’s a common conundrum for many drivers. But fear not, as the ideal timing isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. Unraveling the mystery behind tire changes involves delving into a myriad of factors. Buckle up as we navigate through the why, when, and how of this tire-changing puzzle.
· Tread depth
Worn-down treads cause the tires to lose grip when braking or on a wet road. Use a tire gauge to measure the depth of the tread. Experts recommend changing your tires when they are below 4/32 keeping in mind that 1/32ths of an inch is used to measure tread wear.
It is recommended you change your tires after six years of use. Don’t exceed 10 years as this can cause unnecessary accidents.
You should replace your car tires after 25,000 to 50,000 miles. Consult the owner’s manual of your car for detailed instructions.
So when should you change tires? After your covers are more than 25,000, when the tread depth is below 4/32, and when you’ve been using the tires for more than six years.
What happens if I don’t replace my tires?
Well, here is what happens:
Treads significantly reduce the chances of having a blowout when on the road. Without treads, you will likely have sudden blowouts when you run over a sharp object such as a nail.
· Air pressure loss
Low-tread tires tend to lose air pressure faster compared to normal tires. The tires lose grip which prevents ideal car control, leading to fatal accidents.
· Heat build-up
As you drive, friction is formed between the road and the tires which results in heat build-up. Without treads, this can lead to sudden blowouts causing you to lose control of your car.
Should I replace all 4 tires?
This will depend on the make of your car. If yours is an all-wheel-drive, then you’ll have to replace all tires at once. This is because the difference between the diameter of the new tires and the old tires can cause strain on the engine. That said, some manufacturers are okay with replacing two tires at a go. Refer to your car’s owner’s manual for a detailed answer.
Do I need an alignment after replacing tires?
Yes. You need an alignment after getting new tires. This allows you to get the best out of the tires and also prevents consequences that come with misalignment.
How long can all-season tires run for?
All-season tires can last between 50,000 and 70,000 miles depending on how well you drive and maintain your car.
Which tires last the longest?
While the longevity of your car tires goes beyond the brand, there are those brands that are synonymous with industry-standard tires. They include Bridgestone, Yokohama, Michelin, Goodrich, and Cooper.
Is it safe to replace only one tire?
If possible, replace two or all tires at once. If you have to replace one tire, ensure the other tears have adequate tread to avoid affecting performance.
Ensure you replace your car tires when the treads are worn out to avoid accidents due to blowouts and loss of car control. Also, avoid replacing one tire; instead replace all tires at once. With that, your car will serve you for many years.
Sam is Automole’s editor-in-chief and classic car enthusiast. Sam is studying mechanical engineering at Cockrell School of Engineering, Austin. He also writes for many top automotive publications and appears on the Collecting Cars Podcast.