Here Is All You Should Know About Your Car's Tires

by IndianAuto Team | 15/01/2019
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Have you been worried about the lifespan of your car's tires? Read this article to find out whether it is the time to replace the old rubber or not

Did you know that using a worn-out tire increases the chance of having an accident? However, it may be tricky to know when your car tires are too old, especially when you purchase a used car. Therefore, IndianAuto will give you the full guide of replacing your old tires and how to determine their lifespans.

Also read - All you need to know about car tyre maintenance

What Happens to a Tire as It Ages?

Did you know that if you leave a rubber band for a long time, cracks will appear on the band when you stretch it? Because tires are also made of rubber, the cracks of their inner and outer sides will be worse over time. This cracking process can eventually cause the tread’s steel belts separate from the other part of the tires. Inappropriate heat and maintenance speed up the process.

cracks on a tire

There are more cracks when tires are too old

There have been studies that identify more than 250 accidents in which over-6-year-old tires were experiencing belt and tread separations. Most of the cases happened due to rollover crashes and loss-of-control. Moreover, the consequences of cracking tires can be extremely severe; for instance, in 2010, there were 233 fatalities as well as 300 injuries caused by them.

Everything has its lifespan, so do tires. Although there are high mileage rated tires made of antiozonant chemical compounds which help slow down the wearing out process, sooner or later they will face the destruction by time.

How Long Does a Tire Last?

You must keep in mind that there is no exact number about the ages of any car tires. However, some automakers like Ford and Mercedes-Benz states that drivers should replace a 6-year-old car tire after its production date. Other manufacturers including Michelin and Continental suggest that tires can last up to 10 years and they are willing to help their customers inspect tires after five years of using.

black car tires

There are a lot of tire manufacturers

The reason why car tires don’t have an exact expiry date was thoroughly explained in detail by the Rubber Manufacturers Association:

High temperature: Tires age faster in warm climates according to research conducted by the U.S National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). NHTSA also discovered that in specific environmental conditions, for instance, exposure to coastal climates and direct sunlight can speed up the tire ageing process. Therefore, people living along coastal areas or region with warm or hot weather should pay attention to the suggested car tires’ lifespans to change it timely.

Storage: Although tires in garages or shops haven’t been used, they still age; however, their ageing process happens very slowly compared to the used ones.

Spare tires: Just as the tires that haven’t been used in shops, they are still ageing due to time. The degrading process will be accelerated if they have been inflated or installed on wheels. This is because although the tires haven’t been used on roads, they still exposure to heat, humidity, and climate.

Using conditions: How properly treated are the tires? The answer to this question refers to the using conditions of the tires. You should keep in mind that hitting curbs many times, being repaired for a few punctures, and being underinflated cause them to wear out faster.

Appropriate maintenance is the only and the best way to make sure a long lasting tire. Therefore, keeping the air pressure in tires sufficient and often inspecting them improve their lifespans.

many old car tires

Proper maintenance helps the tires last longer. Otherwise, they have to go to the landfills

How to Determine the Age of a Tire

Have you ever noticed the DOT numbers on a tires’ side? Those numbers give us a lot of information about when and where the tires were made.

For tires made after 2000

The manufacturing date is the last three digits of the printed code whereas the week of manufacture is the first two digits, and the year is the other two numbers. Instantly, if the digits are 0302, it means the tire was made during the third week of the year 2002. Although it is easy to determine the age of tires made after 2000, those manufactured before 2000 are not that simple.

DOT code on a tire

This tire was made during the thirteenth week of 2017

For tires made before 2000

The manufacturing date is always the last three digits of the DOT code, and the first two of those three numbers indicate the week with the year the tires manufactured. For instance, When the three figures of a tire are 043, it means it was made in the fourth week of the year which is the third year of the decade. This is very confusing, isn’t it? However, there is no digit in the code telling us which decade the tire was made. Therefore, we do not know whether it was manufactured in 1993 or 1983. Nevertheless, there are some tires having a small triangle, which indicate the 1990s, after the DOT code.

Also readHow To Choose Tyres For Your Car Wisely

How to treat old tires

Don't waste money to purchase used tires

We all know that the cost of a tire is really expensive, especially the excellent tires. And as a result, more and more people start seeing used tires as an attractive alternative. However, you cannot know which conditions the used tires have been true, and as a matter of fact, its lifespan is considered short. You can carefully check a used tire’s status and age, but it would be better not to buy it because once it is broken, you won’t have any warranty for it.

a new car tire

It's time to buy a new tire when yours is too old

Therefore, go and grab a brand new tire!

Buying a new tire is the best choice; however, you may accidentally purchase ones that put in the garage too long that past its warranty date. When you face this problem, don’t hesitate and go to the seller to request them to replace it with a newer tire. Always keep in mind that you must check a tire manufacturing date.

Let go the old tires

For some people, it is hard to let go a tire that has been with them for a long time. Nevertheless, for their utmost safety, replacing old tires is a must. However, when getting rid of old tires, you must remember to put them in correct landfills or recycling centre because tires are made of rubber which does a lot of harm to the environment if not treated properly.

Read more tips and guides from IndianAuto

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