Michelin 18 May 2010
Check your tyre pressures monthly and before any long trip. At the same time check the tyre tread depths, and look for any signs of sidewall damage, or irregular wear. If in doubt, seek the advice of a trained tyre expert who will be able to tell you if the tyre is suitable for further use.
It’s a good idea to check your tyres regularly for tyre wear. But how? Here’s a simple way to tell if your tyres are worn out.
A Michelin man figure on the shoulder of a Michelin tyre shows the location of the tread wear indicators situated in each of the main grooves of the tread. These indicators are small raised areas at the bottom of the grooves of the tread pattern.
If the surface of the tread rubber is level with these raised areas, the tyre tread depth is most likely very close to the legal limit of 1.6 mm. Or below it! Michelin strongly recommends that you consider changing your tyres before this limit is reached. They may no longer provide sufficient safety and you could be breaking the law.
Even if the remaining tread depth is greater than 1.6 mm, you should adapt your speed and driving style to the external conditions, particularly on wet roads.
Michelin Cold Weather (winter) tyres have a ‘snowflake’ design to show the location of additional tread wear indicators. They are 4 mm high. For optimal grip on snow, both for braking and traction, replace your Cold Weather tyres once they are worn down to the level of the 'snow' tread wear indicators.
After five years or more in service, your tyres should be thoroughly inspected at least once per year. If the need arises, follow the recommendations of the vehicle manufacturer regarding replacing the original equipment tyres. As a precaution, if the tyres have not been replaced 10 years from their date of manufacture (see how to read a tyre sidewall), Michelin recommends replacing them with new tyres. Even if they appear to be in usable condition and have not worn down to the tread wear indicator.
REGULATION 25: This Regulation is concerned with the tyre's load index and speed ratings. It specifically deals with items such as the tyres fitted to Goods Vehicles, Buses and Trailers and for which a Ministry Plating Certificate must have been issued, and a Ministry Plate attached to the vehicle. Amongst other vehicle information the Plate, which must be securely attached to the vehicle in a conspicuous location, gives the maximum axle and gross vehicle operating weights. The Regulation requires that the tyres fitted to the vehicle are not only capable of supporting the maximum permitted load on each axle but of doing so at the vehicle's maximum legal speed. In defining 'load-capacity index' and 'speed category' the Regulation makes reference to UN ECE Regulations 30 and 54 and to the European Union Directive 92/23/EEC.
REGULATION 26: Deals with the mixing of tyres of differing structures. The regulation defines three types of tyre structure, diagonal ply (Crossply), bias-belted and radial. No vehicle shall be fitted with tyres of differing structure on the same axle. For cars and vans (even with twinned rear axle), the following are the LEGAL tyre combinations. Mixing of a temporary spare tyre on a car is allowed, provided it is not driven at a speed exceeding 50mph.
|Diagonal ply (Crossply)||Diagonal ply (Crossply) |
|Bias belted||Bias belted|
|Diagonal ply (Crossply)||Bias belted|
|Diagonal ply (Crossply)||Radial|
REGULATION 27: Deals with the condition and maintenance of tyres. It specifies when a tyre should not be used on the road due to for example: it not being suitable for the use to which the vehicle is being put, or issues relating to its condition or maintenance, such as inappropriate tyre pressures, cuts, bulges or tyre damage. It also allows the use of run flat tyres when in a deflated state provided the tyre and wheel are so constructed to be fit for the use to which the vehicle is being put. This Regulation also specifies that the grooves of the tread pattern of every tyre fitted to cars and light vans shall be of a depth of at least 1.6mm throughout a continuous band comprising the central three quarters of the breadth of tread round the entire circumference of the tyre.
In accordance with these rules, look under the heading 'Tyre selector' for the alternatives offered by MICHELIN for each vehicle model.
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