Checking the tread on your tyres is easy because all car, light truck and medium commercial tyres have tread wear indicator bars moulded into the tyre tread. These bars are located at the bottom of the tread grooves in several locations around the tyre. When the tyre is worn to the point where any of the bars become visibly flushed with the adjacent tread ribs, it’s time to replace the tyre.
Tyres should be considered an investment for your car, as the benefits of regularly replacing and maintaining tyres far outweigh the initial costs involved. For example properly inflated and maintained tyres can improve petrol mileage by up to 3.3 percent 1. With petrol prices as high as they are at the moment, this can mean a serious cash saving over the period of a year or more.
Legal Requirements of Vehicle Tread Section 6 of the RTA Road Users Handbook3 specifies the technical standards your tyres (including the spare) need to meet in order to be considered roadworthy. The RTA guidelines require that your vehicles tyres must be in good condition with a tread of at least 1.5 mm in depth across the tread surface.
It is very important to follow these guidelines not only to avoid a major penalty from authorities but also to ensure the safety of yourself, your passengers and other vehicles and pedestrians on the road.
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