Buying a new car is an exciting experience, but maintaining your new vehicle is a big responsibility. Not only does proper maintenance keep your vehicle running efficiently, it also ensures that your vehicle is safe for the road. A study recently showed that 77% of vehicles needed some type of maintenance or repairs. Of those, 15% had contaminated brake fluid and 18% had contaminated power steering fluid. When issues go unrepaired, it can mean big trouble for your car and poses a safety hazard for drivers on the road. For example, if you go too long without changing your tires, you increase your risk of a blowout or hydroplaning, both of which can cause serious accidents. So how often should you buy new tires then? Luckily, it is fairly easy to check for signs of deteriorating tires. Below are some signs of worn out tires, so of you notice any of them it means you need to buy new tires.
When to Get New Tires
- Treadwear Bar – The treadwear bar is a small bar located within the grooves of tires that acts as an indicator of an old, worn out tire. As you drive, the treads on your tires begin to dull down, bringing the treadbar closer in line with the treads. When the treadbar is level with the treads, you need new tires.
- Penny Test – The penny test helps you determine the depth of the treads on your tires. Treads that are 4/32 inches or deeper are all good, but if they are 2/32 inches or less, you should be buying new tires. To check, stick a penny upside down in the tread so that Lincoln is facing you. If you can see the top of his head, you need to replace your tires. If his head is mostly covered, you’re good to go.
- Bulges in Sidewall – If you notice any irregular shape to your tires, this is an indication that they have some sort of internal damage. Structural damage to the tire can be very dangerous, especially when driving on the highway. If you notice any bulges in your tires, they need to be replaced immediately.