Replacing Bald Tires: How long can I wait? | V&F Auto, Agawam MA

Replacing Bald Tires: How long can I wait?

bald tiresWe often hear from our customers that they dread buying new tires. And, as a result, most people put off replacing worn tires—even totally bald tires—until it's absolutely necessary. In fact, research has shown that more than 1 out of every 10 vehicles on the road has at least one bald tire.
Unfortunately, driving with aged or damaged tires is really dangerous—it drastically increases the risk of a crash or a flat, especially in bad weather. In this article, we'll explain why and answer one of the most common questions we hear in the shop: "Okay, my tires are worn. How long do I have before I need to get them replaced?"

What Is a Bald Tire?

Saying a tire is "bald" is just another way of saying it's worn out. The groovy, textured part of a tire that contacts the road is called the tread; as you drive and the tread rubs against the road, it wears down over time. When a tire's tread is completely worn down to the wear bars, you have a bald tire. If your vehicle has bald tires, you need to replace them right away. Bald tires drastically increase your vehicle's stopping distance, especially when roads are wet.

How do you tell if your tires are worn out?

It all depends on the tread. You can easily tell if your tires’ tread is too worn using an old trick-- The Penny Test. To perform the penny test, slide a penny between the tread blocks of a tire with Lincoln’s head upside down. If you can see the top of Lincoln's head, you need new tires. This means that your tire's tread is at least 4/32 of an inch or more-- which is recommended!
If you check our tread depth and you do see Lincoln's head, that means your tread depth is under the recommended minimum of 6/32 of an inch. You should monitor your tires closely as they will likely attention in the near future.

At V&F

To avoid being in an accident due to bald tires, you should have your technicians inspect your tires every oil change. It’s also important to check your tires regularly for irregular wear and other exterior damage such as cuts, cracks, or bulges. If you do discover damage or need your tires replaced, give us a call! All of our auto repair services are backed by an industry-leading 3 year / 36,000-mile warranty on parts and labor. Contact us at (413) 314-2280 or schedule an appointment online.

Stopping Distance Guide

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="508"]Bald tires are a safety hazard Bald tires drastically increase your vehicle's stopping distance, especially when roads are wet.[/caption]

Written by Nicole Palange