Are Used Tires Safe?

Frankly, it depends. Not all tires are the same. Some may have more patches than most, but it doesn’t mean the tire is bad. The general rule is to check for two things: tread depth and damage. Of course, you don’t want to buy anything with a tread depth near the limit of 3/32” – and in reality 4/32” is cause for consideration.

Once your tread reaches those measurements, it’s time for a different set. Research from AAA suggests that driving on worn tires at highway speed or on wet surfaces can increase stopping distances by up to 90 feet. That’s more than the length of an eighteen-wheeler! That said, when shopping for used tires, always look for a safe tread depth. You should move on if you see visible signs of damage, deep cuts, irregular wear, bulges, or deformation.

If you don’t have a tread depth gauge, there is an easy home remedy you can use to check your current tires. Place an upside-down quarter between the grooves and look at Washington’s head. If you can see all of it, it’s time for a different set. If you’re shopping on a budget and thinking a set of pre-owned tires might be for you, it’s best to focus your attention on where to buy them.

Doing a quick Google search will likely lead you to The site has a healthy selection of top brands like Firestone, Goodyear, Bridgestone, Continental, and BFGoodrich among others. They also have a 90-day money back guarantee, free delivery, and tens of thousands of positive reviews online.

Carlos G. Hill

Carlos G. Hill

Carlos joined TireReview in 2019 after seven years of living and working in Dubai. He has been a journalist for over a decade and has worked for a wide range of publications, including Rolling Stone, Time Out, iQ and Loaded. After starting out on the automotive team as deputy editor of Engine Technology International, Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Technology International and Transmissions Technology International, he has been an editor since 2015, and began editing Tire Technology International in 2018. In 2020, he was appointed editor-in-chief of Tire, Professional Motorsport World, Electric & Hybrid Marine Technology International and Crash test Technology International

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