How do I recognize worn tyres?

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How do I recognize worn tyres?

With every kilometer that you cover in your car, tiny particles detach from the car tyre . If you slam on the brakes or accelerate too hard when starting off, you speed up this process. Worn tires, however, represent a high safety risk. But when is the right time to change tires? In this blog article, you will learn how to measure tire tread and determine when it is time to change it.

Worn tires – a high safety risk
The tires transfer the engine’s power to the road when starting off, change direction when steering and ensure that the car comes to a quick stop when braking. However, a good tire profile is necessary for all these tasks. However, small rubber particles constantly detach from the tire when driving. The wear and tear is considerable, especially if you brake hard or start off with squeaky tires.

If the profile is no longer large enough, this can have serious consequences. This significantly increases the braking distance. In addition, the vehicle may swerve in the curve. Both factors can cause serious accidents. Therefore, the legislator prescribes a minimum depth of 1.6 mm (as of August 2018). If you do not comply with these, you not only pose a great danger to road traffic. You also have to reckon with significant fines.

Everything about fines for tire offenses

How long does a tire usually last?
How long a tire lasts depends on various factors – in particular on driving style and air pressure. The quality of the tire also plays an important role. In any case, they should have a mileage of about 30,000 km . Some drivers report that they have put 60,000 km or more on their tires without falling below the minimum tread depth . However, this is a big exception. Due to the differences, it is important to check the profile regularly. Not only the kilometers driven play a role, but also the time frame. The ADAC, for example, recommends changing the tires after six years at the latest , even if the profile is still intact.

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Front or rear: Where are worn tires particularly dangerous?
The wear of the tires depends a lot on whether it is the drive axle or the axle not connected to the engine. In most cars, the front tires wear out much faster than the rear tires. Many drivers assume that they can delay the tire change a little longer if they simply put the worn front tires on the back of the vehicle and use the rear tires in front. However, this only applies to braking behavior and aquaplaning. The rear tires are much more important for behavior in curves or when changing lanes. If these are worn, the rear can break out, making the vehicle uncontrollable. Since this poses a particularly high risk potential, it is very important to ensure that the rear tires have a good profile.

Winter and summer tires and the tread depth: Are there differences here?
Many drivers wonder whether the tread depth must be the same for winter and summer tires. According to the law, there are no differences: the profile of both tire types must be at least 1.6 mm (as of August 2018). However, to ensure optimal safety, a significantly higher tread depth is required. However, there are differences between summer and winter tires. ADAC recommends changing summer tires with a tread depth of 3.0 mm and winter tires with a tread depth of 4.0 mm .

Measure tire tread: This is how you can tell when the tire is worn out
You can recognize worn tires by the way you drive. With summer tires you will notice a longer braking distance and poor steering response in the wet.

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With winter tires , the car often breaks out of its lane. In addition, the traction is worse. This is evident from the fact that the wheels spin when starting off. However, in order to know exactly when the tires are worn, it is important to measure the tire profile. There are several ways to do this. In the following sections we will introduce you to different methods. This is a good way to check whether your tires still meet the requirements or whether you already need to change them.

Visual inspection: How do I recognize worn tires with the naked eye?
The simplest method is a visual inspection . By examining the tire closely, you can often see at first glance whether the tread is still in good condition or whether it is already badly worn. It is also important to look out for damage . Some models have small ridges in the grooves. As long as the profile protrudes beyond this, keep to the minimum height.

Easy measurement with a coin
Another easy way to spot worn tires is to use a coin. The brass edge of the one euro coin is about 3.0 mm high. If this disappears completely in the tire profile, this is still high enough. However, if you can still see the edge, you should change your tire soon.

Special gauges for tread depth
If you want to know for sure, you can get a tread depth tester . This gives the value very precisely. This allows you to identify worn tires particularly reliably. You have to press the tip of these devices into the profile groove. You can then read the exact value. There are digital and analog versions for this.

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When measuring tread depth, it is important to repeat this process at several points. The wear and tear in different areas often shows large differences. It is therefore important to measure in several places. The road traffic regulations stipulate that the minimum profile must be consistently achieved.

Simply order new tyres
When the tires are worn, it is important to act quickly. Otherwise your vehicle poses a major hazard to road traffic. You can easily find a suitable dealer via our platform. All you have to do is read the required tire size on the vehicle and enter this value in the search bar. For about 40 to 100 euros you will find suitable offers for most sizes.

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