tyre tread

How to Check Your Tyre Tread Wear Levels

Because it’s the only part of the vehicle in constant contact with the road, tyres and their tread depth are very important for the safety of your vehicle.

Likewise, tread depth acts as a signal for the health of your tyres. Low tyre tread depth in winter weather conditions can severely reduce grip and control. Motorists driving with tyres under the legal limit are also at risk of incurring a fine and license points.Likewise, tread depth acts as a signal for the health of your tyres. Low tyre tread depth in winter weather conditions can severely reduce grip and control. Motorists driving with tyres under the legal limit are also at risk of incurring a fine and license points.

tyre tread

tyre tread

Step 1 - Access the tyre tread

The first step in checking tyre tread depth is to get good access to your tyres.

  • Park on a wide, flat and even surface in a safe place off the public highway with the engine switched off and put the keys in your pocket.
  • Put on the handbrake (parking brake) and engage first gear (for manual gearboxes) or park (for automatics).
  • Once you have clear and safe access to the tyres you can begin the inspection.

Step 2 — Check tyre tread

With the tyre tread you can begin to check the depth of the tread and the condition of tyre. Don’t rely on guesswork: purchase an easy-to-use tread depth gauge so that you can monitor your tyres.

Measuring tread depth is not difficult with this simple device and requires only a few minutes of your time.

The legal minimum tread depth in the UK is 1.6 mm across the central three-quarters of the tread width and round its entire circumference. Check the depth of the main tread grooves in several places both across and around the tyre, using the gauge in the fashion demonstrated in the manufacturer’s guidelines.

tyre tread

tyre tread

Tyres also have tread wear indicators moulded into the base of the main grooves. When the tread surface is worn to the same level as these indicators, the tyre is at the legal limit and should be replaced.

Whatever way you choose to check your tyre tread depths, if they are approaching the legal limit or if you have any doubts, get them checked professionally by a tyre specialist. Not all tyres offer the same performance when they are new, and these performance differences increase as tyres wear.

Cutting edge technologies developed by the research and development teams at Michelin allow us to maintain excellent performance during the whole life, all the way down to the legal minimum tyre tread depth (1.6mm).

Due to this level of performance, replacing tyres prematurely is not guaranteed to lead to a gain in safety and performance. There is the obvious financial cost too, as well as an environmental cost to consider.

For more assistance in regard to tyre tread depth, contact Michelin today.

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