Perhaps the most satisfying part of our job at Admiral Tire and Auto is ensuring that customers are driving safe vehicles as they commute to work and transport their families to school, rehearsals, or vacation. One of the best ways for everyone to keep their vehicle safe is to have tires with an optimal tread depth.
Tires with a depth between 9/32” and 12/32” are considered in the optimal range. At 4/32” of tread depth, a tire’s ability to evacuate rain and snow is greatly diminished. Any tire with a tread depth below 2/32” is unsafe and should be replaced immediately.
While those measurements may seem intimidating, there are some simple methods to checking your tires’ depth.
All tires come with tread wear indicators which are tiny bars spaced out between the grooves in the tire. When those bars become even with the tread, it is time to replace the tire.
Another trick is to perform The Penny Test.
Here are the 5 easy steps for having Abraham Lincoln help you check your tread depth.
1. Turn the penny upside down so that Lincoln’s head is inverted and he is facing you.
2. Place the penny between the ribs (raised portion of the tread) of the tire.
3. If the top of Lincoln’s head disappears, there is still adequate depth on the tread.
4. If the top of his head is visible, replace the tire immediately.
5. Repeat this process for all four tires.
As an official supplier of Continental and General Tires, we are proud to offer products that make checking your tread depth a snap.
Along the center rib of some General Tires, is a Replacement Tire Monitor that will read “REPLACE TIRE” when the tire wears to 2/32” of tread depth. The models that include this feature are the G-Max RS, G-MAX AS05, and Altimax RT45.
Another helpful feature of many General Tires are Visual Alignment Indicators. If a tire is wearing unevenly, a four-wheel alignment should be performed to ensure optimal maximization of the value of the tire.
Continental Tires such as the CrossContact LX25, ExtremeContact DWS06PLUS, PureContact LS, and TrueContact Tour feature QuickView Indicators which reveal the gradual degradation of the tire. On those tires, the letters D, W, and S are printed along the tread. As the tire loses depth optimal for snowy conditions, the S disappears. Similarly, as the tire is no longer suited for wet conditions, the W will fade. Finally, when the tire is no longer suited for dry conditions and should be replaced, the D disappears.
Each month, drivers should check their tire pressure and their tread depth. With Continental’s QuickView Indicators and General Tires’s Replacement Tire Monitor feature, drivers will feel confident knowing that their tire is ready no matter what their journey brings.
If you would like a professional tire consultation or would like to schedule an appointment to replace your old tires, contact us today.