Auto 101: 3 Easy Tips For Identifying Worn Tires

Posted on: 6 June 2016

Every time you drive, your tires take a beating. Over time, they will eventually wear out and need to be replaced—as worn tires can be extremely dangerous. If you are like most people, you probably don't know when your tires need replacing. While it might seem difficult, it is actually fairly easy.

So what are the warning signs that you need to replace your tires? Here are three signs:

1. Vibration While Driving

When in your vehicle, you should experience smooth driving. If you notice vibrations, it might be an indicator that your tires are on their last legs. While there are many potential issues that can result in vibrating, you should definitely take a look at the tires because, even if the vibrations aren't caused by the tires, the vibrating may begin to take its toll on the tires. So any time you experience any type of vibration—be it while turning or idling—consult a professional.

2. Bulges or Cracks

Another sign that your tires need replacing is bulges or cracks. Bulging indicates that the tires are not keeping good air pressure. Cracks might indicate that your tires have been punctured. However, a crack might also mean that your tires are suffering from dry rot. Although dry rot might sound complicated, it essentially means that the rubber in the tires is beginning to break down. In any case, bulging or cracking is not a good sign—and it likely means that you need new tires quickly.

3. Worn Tread

Finally, worn tread is another good sign that your vehicle needs new tires. Checking the tread of your tires might seem difficult, but it doesn't need to be. You can easily check the tread of your tires yourself with a penny. Simply place the penny into the tread of the tires with Lincoln's head pointed down into the tire. If his whole head is visible, the tread is definitely worn out, according to Good Year. If you don't want to do the penny test, you can also use a tread gauge. These devices can be purchased at most auto supply stores and are simple to use—just follow the directions according to the manufacturer. If you don't feel comfortable checking the tread yourself, you can also have this done by a professional.

Driving around with failing tires is a recipe for disaster. By knowing when it's time to replace your tires, you can keep your vehicle in good condition and stay safe. Use these three tips to help you determine when your tires should be replaced.