As the only part of a vehicle to have contact with the road, tyres are one of the most important safety features on your car.
According to research carried out by TyreSafe, over 25% of drivers were replacing tyres once they were already illegal. Given that the majority of tyre-related incidents involve badly maintained tyres, it isn’t surprising that in recent years, tyre safety has become essential in general vehicle maintenance.
With a new focus on carrying out tyre checks to ensure yours and other people’s safety on the road, we have put together a simple guide which gives you some foolproof methods of checking your own tyres, to ensure they are safe to drive on.
Checking your tread depth is incredibly important, as tyres with a tread under 2mm are illegal to drive on. Luckily, testing your own tread depth is easier than you might think - all you need is a 20p piece.
Place the coin in the main grooves of your tyre. You shouldn’t be able to see the outer rim of the coin, as this indicates the tread depth is too low and your tyres might be illegal. If this is the case, you should get your tyres checked or replaced as soon as possible.
It’s important to test at least 3 points on each tyre when you are checking your tread depth. Also, make sure to check your tread at least once a month to ensure they are always above the legal depth.
Under-inflated tyres can negatively impact their speed and load capacity, wear rate and fuel consumption. Ultimately, you need properly inflated tyres for them to perform correctly.
Like your tread depth, it is recommended to check your tyre pressure each month or before any long journeys. If you have a newer car, it is likely that it will be fitted with a TPMS (Tyre Pressure Monitoring System) which will alert you to any changes in air pressure.
Part Worn Tyres
It is not an offence for garages to sell part worn tyres, however if you are opting for used tyres, it is important to check they comply with a specific set of criteria.
Selling part worn tyres that don’t meet these criteria is a criminal offence and not only poses a risk to the driver and their passengers, but others on the road.