How Often Should I Replace My Tires?
When it comes to road safety, the strength of your tires can literally be the difference between life and death. As a general rule, you should buy new car tires every 25,000 to 50,000 miles, but there are a lot of other factors that play a role in how often you should change, rotate, or replace your tires.
Rotate or Replace?
No matter how carefully you drive, the wear on tear on your tires is not going to be the same for each individual tire. This is why most car care services recommend that you rotate your tires regularly. A rotation lets your car spread out its wear and tear more evenly, and guarantees that you will get every last mile out of a set of tires.
Generally, you should have your tires rotated every six months, but this is highly dependent upon your routine and how you treat your car. If you drive long distances every day, or if you tend to be a little bit tougher on your car, you may need to have your tires rotated more often.
On the other hand, if you drive less regularly, or if you drive on roads that don’t deal a lot of damage to your car, you may be able to push back a tire rotation to once every year. Check with a professional to get an estimate on how often you should be rotating your tires.
Knowing When It’s Time
Eventually, rotating your tires is not going to be enough. The grooves, or treads on a tire, wear down over time, and eventually they’ll get to the point where they are no longer safe to drive.
If you want a quick way to check your tires’ treads, insert a penny or a quarter face-down into the grooves on your tire. If any of Abraham Lincoln or George Washington’s head is hidden, then your tires are still healthy! If not, it may be time to have them replaced.
The Penny Test, as it’s often called, is a good way for a quick check-up, but for a more detailed report, it never hurts to call in a professional opinion. A professional will be able to give you a more in-depth explanation, as well as recommend various options for how and when to change your tires.
Once again, the timetable for how often your tires will need to be replaced depends on how far and how hard you drive. According to Kelley Blue Book, your tires should be replaced every 25,000 to 50,000 miles, but you may find that your tires are wearing out far more quickly.
All or Nothing?
If one of your tires is showing more damage than the others, you may want to consider replacing that tire alone in order to extend the length of the remaining tires and improve the safety of your car. In addition, any tire that is over six years old should probably be replaced as soon as possible.