Although you keep up with your car’s oil changes, tires are a bit more difficult. Because many factors determine how quickly tires wear out and need to be changed, you can’t follow a schedule for tire replacement. Instead, you’ll have to look for the following warning signs to decide if you need a new set of tires.
The Penny Test
The easiest way to check if your tires need to be replaced is the penny test. All you need is a penny and five minutes. Simply place the penny, with the head side facing you, upside-down into the grooves of the tires. If the tread of your tires doesn’t cover any of Lincoln’s head, then it’s time to get a new set of tires. If only a small portion of Lincoln’s head is covered by the tread, then you’ll need to replace your tires soon, but not immediately.
Other Warning Signs
If you have newer tires, then the penny test is not necessary. Newer tires have wear bars, which are small bumps in the tread. If these wear bars are flush with the tread of your tires, then they need to be replaced.
The most obvious sign of damaged tires is the sidewall. Because tread damage is more common, checking the sidewalls of your tires (around your rims) for cracks or other damage can also help determine when it’s time to purchase a new set of tires.
Although it’s more difficult to tell by the way your car drives if you need new tires, it is possible. You may feel more vibration or notice that your car doesn’t handle as well as it normally does, especially around sharp corners or on wet roads. If you experience any issue with your tires while your drive, then they need to be replaced.