Last Updated on January 25, 2023 by Victor Lukasso
It’s important to check the expiry date of your tires to ensure they’re still safe to use.
Tyres are a critical component of any vehicle, providing the necessary grip and traction to keep the car moving safely. However, like any other mechanical part, tyres have a limited lifespan and need to be replaced periodically to ensure the continued safe operation of the vehicle.
One important factor to consider when it comes to tyre replacement is the tyre expiry date which is usually 6 years after being produced from the tire-building machine.
Tyres that are past their expiry date are more likely to fail, which can be dangerous and can cause accidents
In this article, we will explain how to check the expiry date of your tyres to ensure that they are still safe to use.
How to Check for Tyre Expiry Date
Checking the expiry date of tires shouldn’t be carried out on only existing tires but it’s also mandatory while making type purchases so you don’t buy a tire that’s close to expiry or that has already expired.
Here’s how to go about it;
- Firstly, you need to locate the DOT code stamped to the sidewall of the tyres (it is usually 10 – 11 characters)
- Check for the last four digits on the sidewall; this represents the week and year the tire was rolled out.
- The first two digits of the code represent the week of the year, while the last two digits represent the year. For example, if the code is “1522“, it means that the tyre was manufactured in the 15th week of the year 2022.
- Once you’ve got the DOT Code, you can now add the tyre lifespan to the year of manufacture on the sidewall. For example, if your tyre has a lifespan of six years and the DOT code is “1522“, the expiry date would be the 15th week of the year 2028 (2022 + 6 = 2028).
- You can also get the lifespan of the tyre by subtracting the current year from the year of manufacture. For example, if the current year is 2024 and the tyre was manufactured in 2014, the tyre would be 10 years old.
- Lastly, the output from the above calculations will decide if the tyre is due for a change or needs maintenance.
Despite the fact that the lifespan of a tyre varies from five to ten years depending on the manufacturer; their durability and reliability depend on the usage and storage conditions.
It’s also a good idea to check your tyres for other signs of wear and tear, such as cracks, bulges, or uneven wear, which can also affect their safety and performance.
Also, have it in mind that the tyres warranty expiration date differs from the expiry date. The warranty expiration date talks about a time frame usually 1 or 2 years when the manufacturers are responsible for defects in materials or workmanship while the latter entails when the tire is of age and no longer safe to use.
Tyre Toonie Test/Tire Tread Depth Test
Most auto users often use the toonie test or tire thread depth test to determine if a tire’s thread is still intact and safe for use. The toonie test is done using a toonie (2-dollar coin) and doesn’t determine the age of the tyre.
Insert the toonie into the threads of the tire and If the top of the coin is visible, it means that the tire tread is worn and the tires should be replaced.
As I mentioned earlier, this method is inaccurate and tire organizations don’t promote it. Instead, you can use a tire tread depth gauge for this process.
Since the threads are responsible for providing grip, especially while driving on wet or slippery road surfaces, it’d advised that you change your tires when the tread depth is 4/32 of an inch or less.
How to Prevent Increased Tyre Wear Out
Depending on the condition of the road, it is almost impossible for the tire not to need a quick patch within a year.
Nevertheless, there are safety measures you can use to reduce the rate at which your tires wear out, some include;
- Avoid sharp braking
- Avoid over-inflating or over-deflating your tires (fill in the correct air pressure)
- Avoid parking cars for a long time on the tires
- Store tires in a cool, dry place
- Rotate your tyres every 5,000 to 10,000 miles.
it is important to regularly check the expiry date of your tyres and to replace them when they reach the age of 10 years. By doing so, you can help ensure the safety of yourself and others on the road.