How to Check Tire Tread

Honda Tires

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Although tires can withstand an incredible amount of force and pressure, they’re still experiencing the friction of rough roads and the weight of a motor vehicle. This causes the rubber to slowly wear down. If you learn how to check tire tread, you’ll know when it’s time to retire your current set.

Here at Norm Reeves Honda Superstore Cerritos, we know that a lot of our neighbors in Cerritos, Buena Park, and Long Beach have questions about their tire treads. So, let’s get rolling and talk about the simple ways that you can check your tires.

Why Should I Check Tire Treads?

Tire CheckIf your car’s running smoothly and your tires are full of air, does tread even matter? Yes! Tires that are in good shape increase vehicle control and prolong the life of other automotive parts. A smoother, older tire is more likely to slip in rain and mud. The reduced friction will require you to brake with more force, aging your brakes.

Most tires will last between 25,000 and 50,000 miles, depending on your vehicle and the road conditions it encounters. Rubber does harden with age, so even infrequently driven cars need new tires about every six years.

Easy Tire Tread Checking Methods

There’s a popular trick for testing tread depth—check your pockets for a penny. With your vehicle parked and turned off, insert the penny between the treads’ ridges. Turn the coin so that Lincoln’s head is upside down and facing you. If the divot is so shallow that you can see the president’s entire head, your car needs new tires.

In case your left your pennies in your other pants, many tires feature a built-in wear bar indicator. These little bars are molded into the tread grooves in several spots. When the tire is new, they’re situated deep in the grooves. As the tire wears down, they eventually become flush with the outer tread and a replacement is due.

What is The Tread Depth of a New Tire?

Tire TreadTires are measured in tiny increments. Most new tires are sold at 10/32nds or 11/32nds of an inch. If you own a larger vehicle, your treads might start out a little deeper.

For a precise measurement of your tire treads, grab a ruler or measuring tape. You’ll want one with detailed markings. Insert the measuring device into the tire treads and gauge their depth.

Tires in good working shape will have a depth of at least 4/32nds of an inch. Tires failing the penny test that we mentioned above are down to 2/32nds of an inch. At that point, tire replacement should be a priority.

Find Tire Experts at Our Dealership

Once a tire’s tread is too low, there’s no way to repair it. Cerritos, Buena Park, and Long Beach drivers can replace tires easily at Norm Reeves Honda Superstore Cerritos. Our dealership’s service center maintains a large inventory of tires, including all of your favorite brands.

We’ll also lend our expertise to an inspection of your tire wear. Any uneven wear might indicate other vehicle parts are out of alignment. Contact us to schedule an appointment today!

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