When buying a new tire, it is important to consider aspects such as grip, tread, rolling resistance and wear as they all have an impact on overall handling and performance. A quality tire ensures the safety of your vehicle.
When do I need new tires?
There are three reasons why tires need to be replaced with new ones:
1. Age of the tire
Even tires with little traffic or tires that are not used can be unsuitable for use on the road. Because the tire material ages regardless of use. Even if the remaining tread depth is above the legal minimum tread depth, tires should not be more than eight to ten years old. You can tell the age of a tire from the four-digit DOT number.
2. Wear on the profile
In the EU there is a legal minimum profile depth of 1.6 mm. For your own safety, summer tires should have a tread of at least 3 mm and winter tires at least 4 mm. Because the tire clearly loses performance and driving safety. You can measure the tread depth with a tread depth gauge or simply with a 1 euro coin. The golden border is exactly 3 mm wide. When the gold edge disappears in the tire tread, you can continue driving. If the gold rim is visible, you should think about changing the tire soon. If only one or two tires are worn or broken, you should always replace them axle by axle.
3. Tire damage
Tire damage is often caused by poor handling of the tires or by your own driving behavior, for example when you are driving. B. drives diagonally on the curb or over sharp objects.
What do I have to pay attention to when buying tires?
Which tires are right for you depends on many different factors. Among other things, from the vehicle, personal driving behavior or the location of the place of residence. However, you should always pay attention to the following properties:
If you buy used tires, you should definitely measure the tread depth – either with a tread depth gauge or a 1 euro coin. The coin cannot be used to carry out a measurement that is accurate to the millimeter – but at least a preliminary diagnosis can be made.
The rubber compound of the tire hardens over time, which particularly worsens grip and the braking distance in wet conditions. When properly stored, tires are considered brand new for up to three years after production. You can tell the age of a tire from the DOT number, which indicates the date of manufacture of the tire. The first two numbers indicate the week of manufacture and the last two numbers the year of manufacture. For example, 1820 means that the tire was manufactured in the 18th calendar week of 2020.
Certain tire sizes are permitted for each vehicle. It is also possible to change to a different tire size, but this must be approved for the vehicle. The manufacturer’s recommended information can be found in your vehicle registration document or in the registration certificate, part 1. Each tire also has a maximum permissible speed, which is identified by a letter on the tire. You should also adhere to this information.
How do I recognize good tires?
Similar to the energy efficiency label on household appliances, the EU tire label is intended to give motorists an orientation when buying. The tires are rated on the label in the categories of wet grip, rolling resistance, external rolling noise and snow and ice grip. The tire label is intended to enable the tire buyer to assess individual properties of the tires and to compare them in terms of the criteria. You can also look into tire tests before making a purchase decision.