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Typical tyre problems that can hinder the performance of your car

  Wednesday, 2 May 2018

Vehicle tyre close up

Tyre issues for any road user is no laughing matter.  It not only drastically reduces the performance and efficiency of your car, but it can pose a serious risk to your safety and that of other road users.  Tyres are some of the most common car parts that encounter wear and tear; they are in constant contact with the road and require regular attention to avoid permanent damage and having to fork out on unnecessary replacements.

If you want to know the common signs of tyre problems so that you can rectify them as soon as possible and enjoy a car that is safe to drive at all times, read on.

Illegal tread depths

If you are struggling to achieve the miles per gallon (MPG) that your vehicle normally reaches, or your steering is incredibly light, the chances are you might have a problem with the tread of your tyres.  In the European Union (EU) the legal minimum limit per tyre is 1.6mm.  The quickest test one can do is the ‘20p test’.  Push a 20p coin into the lowest tread depth of your tyres and if the outer edge of the coin remains visible it is below the legal limit and needs replacing immediately.

Note: It’s not a good idea to ignore illegal tread depths.  If stopped by the police, you could incur a three-point penalty on your driving licence as well as a fine of up to £2,500 per tyre.

Unevenly worn tyres

Unfortunately, tyres don’t always wear out evenly; on some occasions, the tyre tread wears out on the outer edges rather than the middle and inner edge.  If uneven tyre treads are prominent, the chances are your tyres have issues relating to their alignment on the wheels.  It may also be linked to suspension problems or over/under inflated tyres, which we will go into more detail now…

Over and under inflated tyres

Incorrectly inflated tyres can result in significant damage to your tyres, restricting their ability to perform safely on all types of roads.  It is said that driving with incorrectly inflated tyres can reduce their lifespan by as much as 25%.  Underinflated tyres heighten the wear and tear on the shoulder of a tyre, resulting in its premature degradation.  Underinflated tyres are also much less responsive for drivers at the wheel.  Meanwhile overinflated tyres tend to lead to premature degradation to the middle of a tyre, whilst restricting vehicle handling.  There is a common theme here – both over and under inflated tyres can inhibit the handling of your vehicle!

Tyre bulges and cracks

Bulges and cracks are something to keep a keen eye out for on all four of your tyres.  The increasing number of potholes on the UK’s roads means it’s more likely one of your tyres will be affected by the impact of driving over a pothole.  These impacts lead to cracks in tyre sidewalls.  If you accidentally hit a curb at a reasonable speed it’s also possible that you will pick up an impact bulge on the impacted tyre.  If your home is close to a string of speed bumps it’s recommended that you not only drive carefully over these, but check your tyres regularly.  Driving over these bumps too quickly is another sure-fire way of picking up cracks and bulges in your tyres.

Misaligned tyres

A misaligned tyre will be visibly worn more on one side than the other.  For instance, a tyre that is misaligned facing outwards will wear more on the inner shoulders than the outer shoulders and vice versa.  Your nearest garage or tyre fitter should be able to realign your tyres within a matter of minutes for you, balancing them correctly to reduce the risk of premature degradation and reduced traction.  This is essential in the colder months of the year.

If, once you’ve carried out sufficient checks on your tyres, you believe one or more of them need to be replaced, a cost-effective way of replacing your tyres is purchasing second-hand tyres.  At ASM Auto Recycling, we have over 250,000 guaranteed car parts including hundreds of tyres from end-of-life vehicles that still have excellent tread depths and many hundreds of miles left in them.  Instead of paying full price for a new tyre, why not pay a fraction of the price for a part worn tyre that also comes with a 90-day guarantee for genuine peace of mind.

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