Tires have a significant impact on your car’s performance and safety. Therefore, choosing the right tire is a process that should not be taken lightly. When making this decision, there are a number of factors to take into consideration. To help you out during this decision-making process, Road Runner Tire Shop has identified some of the most important aspects, and we have dedicated this blog to showcasing our findings.

Road Runner Tire Shop is New Jersey’s Top Rated Local Truck & Car Tire Shop. We specialize in new and used tires, as well as flat repairs, DOT inspections, diagnostics, balancing, and road services. We are passionate about helping you find the right tire and, most importantly, keeping you safe.

Read on to learn about some of the things to consider when hunting for new tires.


Determining the Right Time

Ideally, this is something you’ll get to decide—meaning, you won’t have a blowout driving down the highway and then face no other option but to get a new tire or tires.

The most apparent and easiest factor is to examine how much tread you have left on your tires. Tread depth is crucial to a tire’s performance. It directly affects your car’s ability to stop and how your car handles in wet conditions. When your tires’ tread has reached 1/16 of an inch, they need to be replaced. Some suggest that, at 1/8 of an inch of tread, the integrity and capability of your tires is compromised, and they should, therefore, be replaced.

Conveniently, many new tires have a handy “tread wear indicator bar” built in, which over time becomes more prominent in appearance. When these bars can be seen clearly intersecting the tread of your tire, it’s time to start shopping around for new tires. Another helpful tip to confirm this assessment is to stick a penny—with Lincoln’s head upside down—in the groove of the tread. If you can see Honest Abe’s entire head, it’s time to pay your favorite tire shop a visit.

Additionally, the age of your tires should be taken into consideration. According to most industry guidelines, tires should be inspected at 6 years of age and should be replaced at 10 years of service. However, most tires don’t reach this age and typically need to be replaced after three to four years—or around 15,000 miles of usage. Naturally, the climate and how the tires are used can play a vital role in their lifespan.

Finding the Right Size

When shopping for tires, adhering to your vehicle’s manufacturer requirements is crucial. Today, cars are meticulously engineered and designed with safety in mind. However, to benefit from this and ensure maximum efficacy, standards must be followed. A big part of this is equipping your vehicle with the type of tire your manufacturer advises. You will want to pay extra close attention to measurements like load index and speed rating.

To find the measurements of your suggested tire refer to your owner’s manual or the placard on the driver’s side door. These recommended measurements should correspond with the information on the sidewall of the tire. For example, the measurements may look something like this: P 255/55R18 97T or 225/50R17.

It’s also important to note that if you’re not purchasing four new tires, make sure your replacement tires match your existing tires. Additionally, if you are unsure of what tires are right for your vehicle, seek the help of professionals. If you’re in the Kearny, New Jersey, area we’d love to help you out. Drop us a line or give us a call to get started!

Check back in soon for How to Pick the Right Tires—Pt. II