Seven (7) things you should know about your car tyres

The tyres are probably the most important part of your car: they connect the car to the ground. The car won’t move if they are flat. The car is more prone to accidents if the tyres are in bad shape. The car’s ability to accelerate, manuevre and stop is seriously dependent on the conditions of the tyres.

car tyres

Here are a few important things you should know about your tyres:

  1. A tyre’s performance deteriorates as it ages.
  2. Infrequent use or poor storage can accelerate the ageing process. As such, the longer a tyre stays unused, the more it deteriorates.
  3. Even if a tyre is brand new, if it has been sitting unused for a long time, deterioration has set in and ideally should not be purchased or used.
  4. To find out the date of manufacture of your tyre, look for the code in the format “DOT DA08 JM1R 1514” on it. The last four digits are what you need. In this case “1514”, which refers to week 15 of the year 2014. That is when your tyre was manufactured.
  5. Do not leave your spare tyre unused. Rotate usage of all your tyres such that everyone of them serves as spare from time to time.
  6. Car tyres also come in different sizes. Your tyre size is written on it in the format “225/45 17R 91Y”. Make sure that you buy tyres in sizes recommended by the car manufacturer.
  7. Each tyre also has a maximum speed rating as well. The “Y” in the tyre size code above is actually the maximum speed rating of the tyre. The code ranges from A to Z. Y here means a maximum speed of 299 km per hour. Do not race your car above the tyres’ speed ratings as you will be putting yourself and others in danger.
  8. We know we said 7 things, but here’s a bonus: Before getting into the car and moving each time, have a quick look at your tyres, so you can spot early signs of any issues.

Do you have any other tyre tips? Feel free to add to this list.

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12 comments

  1. you might wanna add that tyres have a shelf life, usually 4 years from DoM. a 4 year old unused tire is “expired”. that’s not to say that tyres are unusable after this “expiry” date, ask any Nigerian motorist. let’s just say that the manufacturer guarantees the tyre will work for a certain period (4 years) and after this “expiry” date, OYO l’owa as structural integrity and elasticity take a drop

  2. For Naija, those 4 years tire expiring date is equivalent to 7 years. Saw one the other day with all the tire wires showing and the driver didn’t even have a care in the world..

  3. This is why we have tyre bursts on our roads. And depending on speed and location, this could be dangerous.

    Whether or not you use a tyre, it expires after 4 years and you use further at your own risk.

    I dont quite support point 5 though it may be valid. I wouldnt have time to be switching tyres all in the name of keeping spare usable. Its a spare. Its just to get me to the next shop to fix my main tyre.

    1. it’s something you should do periodically, like flipping your mattress to avoid localized compression. as per the time factor, you’d only need to do it say once a month. as for replacement, it’s not the spare you’re protecting, but the 4 tyres you’re using so you’ll be buying 4/5 tyres sooner than you’d need to otherwise

    2. You are one of those students that used to remind lecturers of previous class’ assignments abi???

  4. If you must buy your so called tokumbo, check if it’s for cold or hot regions, if you imported or bought a western fairly used car, don’t drive with the tyres it came with. tyres could be for cold region and low speed.
    same reason Mitsubishi L300 finished Nigerian lives some years back. front tyre bursts and it’s to your grave all passengers.

  5. Even new tyres burst at certain speed or impact with some deadly potholes. And it can happen with any brand of car. Hence the reason for this article.

    Also, It is not only mitsubishis that have taken lives on these roads. We are just to be cautious and pay good attention to our tyres

    1. @OlamideMB
      tyres are built with certain characteristics as elastic, tough and rugged.
      they are not meant to burst at potholes on high speed, it’s designed to manuevre uneven surfaces due to their elastic nature, they could run through rough and sharp surfaces because they are tough and rugged.
      the major reasons they burst on high speed includes but not limited to
      1. expired tyres.
      2. exceeds rated temperature.
      3. exceeds rated speed.
      4. exceeds rated load.
      5. exceeds rated air pressure(pneumatic energy)
      6. substandard tyres (rare cases).

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