We’re all busy. It’s the 21st-century curse: We’re headed from one thing to another, almost all of the time. From the work commute to afterschool sports to visiting family or other road trips, we spend a lot of time in our vehicles. Drivers put a lot of thought into available safety features and ratings, so why don’t we spend more time thinking about the condition of our tires? Good tires are a basic part of auto safety, and we ignore them at our peril. Here are six signs that it’s time for new tires.
Almost everyone knows about the penny test, but for those who don’t: Insert a penny into the tread of your tire with Lincoln’s head facing downward. If the tread doesn’t touch Lincoln’s head, you need to replace that tire. But there are other signs that are obvious, and you don’t need to be a certified technician to detect whether you need new tires. If you notice a bulge on your tire, it’s absolutely time to get that tire replaced. A bulge is a sign of an impending blowout, and you need to get your car serviced immediately. Also, if your tread is so worn that you can see the metal or polyester cords that are designed to support the tread, it’s well past time to get a new tire.
Some tire manufacturers claim their tires last up to 10 years, but if you’re spending a good amount of time on the road, you’re putting constant wear on your tires. Have a technician you trust check your tires if they’re nearing the 10-year mark. And while we’re talking about the state of our tires, let’s remember that we need to check more than the tread. If the sidewalls of your tires are cracked or worn, that means it’s time to replace them. Severe weather or incorrect alignment are the chief cause of sidewalls cracking, so be aware. And if your vehicle has a significant shake? It might not be something mechanical. Your tires could be wearing out, so your best bet is to have a certified tech check them out.
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Just remember that there are tons of ways that you can check your own tires, but at Nissan of Lexington Park, our Tire Service Department is happy to help when we’re needed. If you think your tires are worn, come see us and let’s see how we can help.