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Q: How Do I Check If My Tires Are In Good Condition?

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How do I check if my tires are in good condition?

A: Checking a tire’s condition is a simple mat...

Checking a tire’s condition is a simple matter of performing a visual inspection, checking for a few specific things.

The first thing you want to check is if your tire tread is in good condition. The tire tread should always be above a certain point, and should be replaced once they have worn beyond said point. Usually this point is indicated by wear markers that will become obviously visible when the tire reaches them. You can also use a tire tread depth gauge to obtain an exact measurement.

It’s also important to check the sidewalls of the tire for any damage. Thoroughly examine the tires for any tears, slashes, or cracks in the sidewalls. As the sidewalls of a tire are what supports the entire weight of the vehicle, if they are damaged the tire may become weakened and more susceptible to blowouts.

You also want to check and make sure that there are no nails, shards of glass, or other objects lodged, or embedded anywhere in the tire. If a nail or piece of glass punctures a tire it can cause the air to leak from the tire, sometimes slowly. If a nail larger than one quarter of an inch punctures the tire, it may not be repairable, and you may want to consider replacing it.

One last thing to check is the age of the tires. Inspect the tread and sidewalls of the tires to see if they have perhaps become hardened or brittle due to age, or exposure to the elements. Hardened, or brittle tires will provide significantly less traction with the road, which can compromise vehicle safety.

For the most part, a simple visual inspection should be able to quickly tell you if your tires are in good condition. If when examining your tires, you encounter any of the cues above, consider replacing the tire, or set, if possible.

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