When should you change your car tyres?
Updated: Sep 25, 2021
We usually recommend car owners to change their tyres every 30,000 to 40,000km or every 2 to 3 years due to tyre wear and tear.
However, if it is too hard to keep track of how many km or how many years your tyre has been in use, an easier way to know when to replace your tyre is by looking at the tread depth.
In Singapore, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) legally requires that all vehicles have a minimum tyre tread depth of 1.6mm. (Anything below 1.6mm we call the tyre “botak” or bald and they are illegal on the roads)
The tread depth is a measurement of the depth of the grooves to the surface of your tyres. The tyre tread depth plays an important role in safety and performance. When you drive, the friction with the road gradually wears down your tyres, decreasing the tread depth. Heavily worn tyres have a lower tread depth and will not perform optimally as these “botak” tyres have less control in wet conditions and have a likelihood of aquaplaning.
Aside from normal tyre wear and tear, damaged tyres may also require replacement. Some damage like tyre punctures on the tread can be easily repaired. However, if the damage or puncture is on the sidewall of your tyre, the tyre has to be replaced as the sidewall holds the most pressure and once damaged, it might not be able to withstand the pressure.
How to check my tyre’s tread depth?
The $1 Test (Singapore edition)
Take a $1 Coin and place the coin in the groove of the tyre with the side that has the word “SINGAPORE” touching the tread of the tyre. If you can see the word “SINGAPORE” (refer to the left image), your tyres should be replaced immediately as the tread has worn out (below 1.6mm) and is reaching its safety line.
If you do not have a $1 coin or you are not sure how to check, fret not as the tyres are designed with tread wear indicator bars. If you look in the grooves (between the tread ribs) of the tyres, you’ll see some bumps and these bumps are the 1.6mm indicator bars. So if your tyre tread is flushed with these indicator bars, it is time for you to change your tyres.
Drop by our workshop if you need any advice on whether your tyres should be replaced. It is a free service we provide, don't hesitate to approach us!
Lastly, when you are changing your tyres, it is recommended to replace all four tyres at the same time. This helps to clear any grip differences between new and old tyres which may affect performance and driving experience. However, if you only need to change two tyres, the new tyres should be installed on the rear wheels for better grip and stability.
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Hock Seng Wah Tyres Trading
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