How Often Should I Replace My Car Tires?

Tire Tread Depth Test & Tire Age Reading

A tire replacement is one of the many regular automotive services that your BMW will require. The specific longevity of your tires will depend on a variety of factors. These include your acceleration and braking habits, regularly rotating the tires, air pressure, road conditions, and more. As tires wear down, essential functions like slowing, stopping, and traction may be increasingly impaired. These factors will affect your driving ability and your vehicle’s performance.

Replacing the tires before they are severely worn is essential, but how do you know when the tires need to be replaced? Figuring out when you should change your tires really comes down to 4 significant aspects:

1. Tire Tread Depth

Low tread is one sign that the tires need to be replaced. When you bring your BMW to our service shop at BMW of Milwaukee North, we can inspect the tread wear to determine how much life remains in them. You may also check tire tread wear at home using a penny. Insert the penny in the tread with Lincoln’s head facing downward. If you can see the entire head, it is time to replace the tires.

Many states have rules that mention tires need to be replaced when they have less than 2/32 of an inch left of tread depth. However, even if you have 2/32 of an inch of tread depth left, you may still need to go ahead and replace your tires depending on where you live.

Low tread wear may also be evident when you drive. For example, the tires may lose traction with the road while you are braking or turning. In some cases, the car may shake slightly when the tires need to be replaced.

2. Weather

Even if you have 2/32 of an inch of tread depth left, you might want to go ahead and replace your tires if you live somewhere that receives a lot of rain or snow. Extra tread depth helps you safely navigate wet roads and avoid hydroplaning. Extreme cold or extreme heat can also negatively affect your tires. Our tire experts can help you decide when the right time to replace your tires is.

3. Age of Your Tires

How often should you get new tires? Sometimes, your tires need to be replaced regardless of how much tread they have left. It can feel like you’re getting rid of perfectly fine tires, but at a certain point in time, tires become too old to remain safe and must be replaced. Tires will wear down over time and become more at risk for catastrophic failure which might lead to a collision. The walls of your tires may also become weak over time. This may be exhibited by cracking or warping. You may also notice that a tire consistently bulges outward when properly inflated.

If your tires are five years old, they should be professionally checked at least once a year. If your tires are more than 10 years old, they should be replaced regardless of their condition. You might drive very few miles because you have a short commute, are retired, or own a classic car, yet you might still need new tires.

How can you tell how old your tires are? Luckily, there’s a simple method to determine the age of your tires. There is a four digit number molded right onto each tire that will tell you the week and year it was made. In the example image, you’ll see the tire was made in the 44th week of 2016.

4. Which Vehicle You Own

The type of vehicle you own may mean the difference in replacing one tire or having to replace all four tires. If your vehicle’s tires are new, you can probably get away with replacing just one tire. If your tires are significantly older, then the new tire will be a different size than the remainder of the other tires. This creates an issue where the smaller tires have to work harder to complete the very same distance as the larger tire.

Mismatched tires can cause additional wear and tear on vehicle components. This is especially true for all-wheel drive vehicles. With all-wheel drive, if tires on one axle are spinning faster than your other tires, your vehicle’s computer might think you’re losing traction and could add power inaccurately. This could potentially cause your vehicle to think you’re driving in slippery conditions, and it might stay in a mode not designed for full-time driving.

Does BMW of Milwaukee North Replace Tires?

At our BMW Tire Center in Milwaukee, we can replace your tires if needed. We have the expertise to identify your vehicle’s specific tires, so you know you’re always driving on tires made for your vehicle. Additionally, as part of your BMW’s routine maintenance service, our team will rotate the tires, ensure that they are properly inflated, and check their condition. These steps will help you to optimize their life and stay on top of their remaining longevity. To schedule your BMW’s next tire service, contact us today.