How to Check Your Car’s Tyres

Tyres are an essential part of your vehicle which is why you should regularly be checking them. We’ve covered all the key info in this article.

Tyres are the one part of your car that are constantly in use, whether you’re moving or stationary your tyres are always touching the ground.

Tyres are a part of a car that is expected to be worn and will need replacing more regularly than other components, but you want them to last as long as possible. To help you do this there are three essential checks you should regularly complete which we’ll cover below for you.

What to Check on My Tyres

The three things you should be checking are:

  1. The tread depth
  2. The general condition
  3. The tyre pressure

We recommend checking these at least once a month, though you might find it more beneficial to check more regularly depending on your mileage, and before you go on any long trips.

If your car is supplied with a spare tyre then you’ll also want to check this each time you check your tyres – there’s nothing worse than getting a flat and then realising your spare tyre isn’t functional as well.

How to Check Tyre Tread

It is a legal requirement for all cars in the UK to have a tread depth of 1.6 mm around the entire circumference of the wheel over the central three-quarters of the tyre.

If you are stopped by the police and your tread does not meet this requirement you may be fined, and your car will fail its MOT if the tyre tread is lower than this.

You can measure the tread by simply inserting a ruler, a specialist tread measurement tool you can from Halfords and similar stores, or a 20 pence piece into the tread and making sure it reaches the necessary depth.

If you find one of your tyres is below 1.6 mm depth then you should get this replaced as soon as possible, as it is not only illegal but also dangerous to drive with a tyre below this tread. This is particularly important in the winter months when wet weather and ice can make the road slippery.

How to Check Tyre Condition

To check the tyres’ conditions you will simply need to conduct a visual inspection of the tyres.

You’ll want to check for any cuts or cracks to the tyre surface. Small cracks can be normal wear and tear, as exposure to UV light can cause these. Larger cracks or cuts can mean the tyre has lost some of its rigidity and structural integrity and make them more likely to blow while on the go. If you’re ever concerned by any cuts to your tyres then we recommend visiting a garage / tyre provider and they’ll be able to advise you on this.

You also want to check for any bulges to the sidewall of the tyres, this indicates there is structural damage and the air pressure within the tyre is creating a bulge in that spot. You should get any tyre with a bulge repaired or replaced by a garage or tyre supplier as soon as you are able to as it may easily burst and cause an accident if you are driving at the time.

How to Check Tyre Pressure

The third aspect you should check is the tyre pressure.

Each vehicle will have a slightly different pressure recommendation and you’ll be able to find what your tyre pressure should be in the vehicle manual, on the manufacturer’s website and some models even have it on the inside of the door seal.

You can get a device to check tyre pressure at home and on the move but it can be quicker to use one of the air machines at a petrol garage as they will fill up the tyre if needed.

One thing to be mindful of is that some vehicles have different pressure for front and rear tyres so you might need to reset the target pressure between the front and rear tyres.

These three simple checks can take as little as five minutes and will help keep your car in its best running condition.

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