You Save a Lot by Buying Used Tires, but Know How to Choose What’s Safe
The foundation for every vehicle are its tires and a new set of used tires can be a great way to save money and keep your car safe. In the best condition, tires keep your vehicle safely on the road and are strong enough to avoid blow outs and tire-related accidents. In their worst condition, they can put you and your family in harm’s way. It’s, therefore, critical that you make the right purchasing decision when buying new tires.
When it comes time to buy a new set of tires again in Savannah, GA, many car owners choose used tires instead of new. Aside from the more obvious reasons (i.e. affordability), used tires provide lasting benefits for your vehicle and family.
To guarantee you’re used tires are good to go, consider these helpful suggestions before you make a purchase.
Don’t Buy Used Tires With Exposed Belts
Analyze the sidewall and tread surface of any tire you’re looking to buy. Bumps, waves or any other irregularities point to a larger problem in the tire’s steel belts. Rubber delaminates from these steel belts overtime, making it a common problem in used tires. You should be able to feel any changes in the rubber by running your hands over the sidewall and tread to spot problems, even if the tire is deflated.
Look for Liner Damage
Check the inside of the tire for liner damage and/or unprotected cords. Tires that have at one time or another lost air have likely had their sidewalls collapse and possibly fold over, causing friction between both sides. This effectively eliminates the rubber liner on the inside of the tires, causing irreparable damage. You can spot this if you notice a “stripe” of wear encasing the sidewall of the tire. It will be soft to the touch, and definitely different in texture from the rest of the sidewall.
You may also notice rubber dust, which is effectively just left over rubber, on the inside of the wall. Any of these symptoms are a sure sign the tire is unsafe, and you don’t want to buy it.
Poorly Executed Repairs are a Deal Breaker on Used Tires
Most consumers know to look for punctures on the outside of tires before they buy them, but often puncture marks are only noticeable on the inside. While a properly repaired puncture shouldn’t be a deal-breaker, improperly repaired holes can cause more damage than they’re worth. If you really want to play it safe, avoid any tires that have been plugged or patched up. As a general rule, avoid any large punctures, or punctures that are within an inch of the sidewalls.
Avoid Aging Tires
Always check the tire age before making a purchase. Every tire should have a four-digit number located on the outside that denotes the week and the year it was made. If it doesn’t, then run away! There’s a good chance the dealer is being dishonest and has eliminated the number in hopes of selling it. Some even paint the side of the tire to make them look newer than they are. Check the number to make sure it is younger than six years old.
These are the major signs of damage and what to avoid when purchasing a used tire. While it may differ slightly from tire to tire, make sure your used tires don’t fall into any of these categories.