Part worn tyres are previously used tyres that have been removed from vehicles when the most effective portion of the tread of the tyre has been worn away leaving only 3mm of tread depth. They are then re-sold with a lower tread depth for a reduced cost however this heavily reduces their effectiveness.
What is the effective tread depth?
Most tyres have 8mm of tread brand new, which are designed to pull water away from the surface of the road as the wheel is in motion. A brand new tyre with its 8mm tread can disperse roughly 15 litres of water per second. This tread reduces as they wear with the stopping distance increasing when under 3mm of tread depth. If the tread reaches below this, the ability the tyres have to steer or brake becomes increasingly difficult, which could in turn, add up to an extra 8 metres of stopping distance in wet weather. An example of a great wet weather tyre is the Dunlop Sports Maxx RT, which is a run-flat summer tyre designed to shorten braking distances, both at high speeds and in wet weather conditions.
Where do part worn tyres come from?
European countries such as Germany often ship any part worn tyres that have reached a tread depth of 3mm to other countries, in order for companies to sell them on for a cheaper price. Most drivers in Germany will change tyres when it reaches this depth in order to maintain grip and higher safety levels. Part worn tyres’ probability of generating enough grip, particularly in wet weather, declines dramatically as the tread is worn down to or below the 3mm depth.
Is it illegal to sell part worn tyres?
It isn’t illegal, as long as the tyres meet the legal requirements, however we strongly advise fitting new tyres to your vehicle. New tyres do not only increase safety levels, but are much more durable, therefore getting much more for your mileage. Rubber that has been previously used and has become tired, can harden, causing less traction, even if the tread is still at or just above the minimum tread depth.
What is the minimum tread depth in the UK?
The legal limit on the tread depth of tyres in the UK is 1.6mm although tyres should be changed before getting to this point. Usually, front tyres tend to wear down more rapidly, due to the movement from steering. Any service or MOT test will flag up tyres below 3mm as an advisory to change them to maintain reasonable braking distances and grip levels. Make sure to check your tyres, you can check out the large range available and purchase them at Asda tyres.