How Old Can Tires Be and Still be Safe? Learn About Tire Age Laws

 

Tires have a maximum life of ten years with some manufacturers suggesting much less. However, most will not last for nearly this long before needing to be replaced due to natural damage. It’s important to maintain your wheels and know how to recognize when it’s time to replace your tires. 

Tires Don’t Last Forever - It’s Important to Stay Safe!

Tires’ quality degrades with time. Though drivers expect this, many don’t understand the causes or the telltale signs that it’s time for a replacement. For example, did you know that an unused tire’s integrity diminishes? Prolonged UV exposure leads to rubber’s chemicals warp, causing dry rot. This makes it easier for tires to crack. What’s more, tires’ treading naturally wears away with use, decreasing the traction between the wheels and the pavement. This hurts the vehicle's’ ability to navigate poor weather conditions and slick roads. Plus, treading helps cool the tires meaning that, if significantly worn, the tire risks overheating. Consequences of this can include the steel belts separating from the tire, causing drivers to lose control of their vehicles. 

How to Tell the Age of Your Tire in the First Place

It’s important to note that older tires may deceptively appear as usable. For this reason, a technician should examine your tires during your annual vehicle inspection. However, you can easily check the age of your tires, yourself. Every tire’s sidewall has a series of numbers; newer ones may display the code on the outward-facing sidewall while more dated versions may show it on the inner sidewall. Look for a series starting with “DOT.” The last four numbers of the ID communicate the week and year that the tire was constructed. As mentioned above, no tire should be more than ten years old, and some manufacturers recommend replacing the tires after six years of use. However, if you or your mechanic identify signs of dry rot or cracking, switch out the tire regardless of the age. 

You Can Prolong Tire Life with Proper Storage

The more elements with which the tire comes in direct contact, the more rapidly its quality will diminish.  Store unused tires in a cool space with low humidity in air-tight bags. Position them vertically on the shelf to limit the amount of pressure on the structure. This will slow the aging process but will not eliminate entirely. Therefore you should still listen to the manufacturer’s guidelines for the maximum tire age. 

How to Make Sure Your Tires are Safe

An untrained eye may not be able to spot issues with the tire. Therefore, it’s important to have them inspected by professionals. 

Make an appointment at the Bo Beuckman Quality Ford service center. Located in Ellisville, MO, we a short drive away from St. Louis, Chesterfield, Eureka, O’Fallon, and Valley Park.

We offer new tires from 14+ trusted manufacturers, all offered at a great rate. If you buy four select tires, you receive a $70 rebate in the mail. Plus, all tires comes with our lowest price guarantee.
Categories: Parts
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