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Belleville, IL Auto Maintenance: How do I know if I need new tires?

When to purchase new tires in Belleville, IL

With all of the miles you put on your car, proper maintenance is essential to keeping things running well. You need to regularly inspect and maintain various parts of your car, from your oil to your tires. If you haven't changed your tires in some time, here's how to check if you need new tires.

penny test new tires

The Penny Test

The most common way to check tire tread—and the easiest test for you to conduct at home—is the penny test. To check your tire treadwear using this method, simply wedge a penny into the grooves of your tires with Abraham Lincoln's head pointing down. If the tread covers any part of Lincoln's head, you should be alright. If not, your tread is wearing down and your tires need to be replaced.


Like many things in life, tires have somewhat of a set lifespan. Of course, your results may vary depending on how you drive, the quality of tires you purchased, and the conditions of the roads you drive on.

In general, a new tire installation will last at least 50,000 miles. The average person drives about 12,000 miles each year, so a set of tires rated for 50,000 miles should last for about four years.

Keep in mind that this isn't necessarily set in stone. Your tires may wear more quickly than this without regular tire balancing, and a lack of tire pressure could further contribute to tire wear.

Other Factors

Even if your tires are newer and the tread is okay, there may be other problems that warrant a tire replacement.

Firstly, tires are sensitive to extreme weather. Whether it's a 100-degree summer day or a snowy winter evening, driving in extreme weather can increase wear on your tires and lead to you replacing them earlier than you would normally need to.

You may also want to replace your tires if you're not driving on the right kind. Some tires are made specifically for summer and others for winter. If you have studded tires, you can only drive on them in snow or ice. Keep all of this in mind when considering new tires.

tread on new tires

Your Move

If you're still not sure whether you need a new set of tires, bring your car to Hotz Automotive Services in Belleville, IL. We can inspect your tires and let you know if it's time to have a new set installed.