How to Buy Tires
Car Tire Buying Tips
Do You Need New Tires?
We all hate spending money on our cars, but buying new tires is important to your vehicle's safety and they need to be maintained. Usually, that means keeping the manufacturer-recommended tire pressure and rotating them on a regular basis. But sooner or later, they are going to wear out and you'll have to buy new tires.
But the question may be how to buy tires? And how can you tell if it's time for a change? The average tire comes with about 11/32-inch of tread depth. Running perpendicular to the tread at various intervals you will find wear bars. Wear bars are 2/32-inch tall and represent the last usable bit of tread. Check all four tires. If any part of a tire is worn within another 2/32-inch of the wear bars, it's time for a replacement. Another easy rule of thumb is to use the penny trick. Place a penny with Lincoln's head down into the shallowest bit of tread. If you can see the top of old Abe's head, it's time to buy new tires.
Even if you can see Abe's hairline, it may be time for new shoes if your tires no longer perform well in the rain or snow or if one or more tires is damaged. A damaged tire can be fixed if the puncture is in the middle of the tread. If the puncture is too close to the edge of the tread, too big, or in the sidewall, you'll have to replace that tire. If you are replacing only one tire, it's best to buy the same model and brand as the other three.
Examining your tires may reveal that only two need to be replaced. If that's the case, buy new tires and put those new ones on the back of your car, whether it's front- or rear-wheel drive. New tires channel rain away better than old ones, so putting the new tires on the rear can prevent fishtailing in the rain, which could lead to an accident. Read on to find out how to buy tires for your car, truck, or SUV.