How long should a new set of tyres last?Wed, 20/09/2017
The cost of a new set of tyres can vary significantly depending on style and indeed brand. But, should this affect their longevity?
David Muller, MSN news, reports:
It may be tentative, but tyres do have an expiration date. There is a general consensus that most tyres should be inspected, if not replaced, at about six years and should be absolutely be swapped out after 10 years, regardless of how much tread they have left. How do you know how old your tyres are? There's a code on the sidewall.
Wear is a far more straightforward consideration: Tyremakers and safety advocates say a tyre is worn out when its tread depth reaches 2/32 of an inch (1.6mm in the UK). That's all fine, but what most car owners want to know is how long to expect a set of new tyres to last before they need to be replaced.
"I wish it were simple to say how long each tyre might last, but tyres are different," said Dan Zielinski, a spokesman for the U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association (USTMA).
"Some tyre manufacturers offer a warranty as high as 80,000 miles or more, reflecting confidence in that particular product’s longevity based on its engineering, technology, and design. Other tyres may be built to provide 30,000 miles of service."
Or less; some high-performance tyres on cars driven aggressively will be worn to the 2/32-inch point without ever seeing 15,000 miles, but those are extreme cases.
The average American drives between 14,000 and 15,000 miles a year, according to data from the Federal Highway Administration. Zielinski said that, if you're kind to your tyres—that is, you aren't constantly peeling out at stoplights and you properly maintain them—most new tyres on the market today will last about 60,000 miles.
For what it's worth, the USTMA did a review of several thousand recently scrapped tyres and found that most were three to four years old.
There was no way of telling how many miles were on those tyres, but it's easy enough to multiply four years by 15,000 miles annually to confirm the rough approximation of tyre durability.
If you want to figure out how soon you'll wear out the tyres on your car, Zielinski said it would be a good idea to start by determining how many miles you drive each year.
Divide the number of miles on the odometer by how many years you've owned the car (starting, obviously, from when you first got the car and accounting for any mileage it had on it at that time).
Then you can compare that with any advertised warranty on the make and model of the tyres and figure out how many years of service to expect.
If you live where winter tyres are advisable and swap those onto the car for some months of the year, your regular tyres will get less use and will endure for a longer period of time, but remember the caveats about tyre age.
Zielinski also noted that if you hit the wear bars at 50,000 miles on a set of tyres with a 60,000-mile warranty, for example, tyremakers that offer such coverage will typically prorate the price of a new set.
In this example, you could expect a discount on the new set equal to one-sixth their price, or about 17 percent. You might not get it, though, if you decide to change brands.
In general, the best way to preserve the life of your tyres, and keep yourself and your passengers safe, is to maintain them properly. Here are some tyre basics and maintenance tips:
Tyres can range in longevity from 30,000 to 60,000 miles depending on brand. But there are steps you can take to make them last a little longer. Avoiding heavy braking and ensuring your tyre pressure is checked regularly are a couple of steps you can take. You could also rotate them and align them regularly.