Is It Safe To Buy Used Tires?

19 January 2016
 Categories: Automotive, Blog

Brand new tires are expensive, which is why some people turn to used tires as an alternative. However, some people may hesitate to purchase used tires due to safety concerns. Tires that have been treated badly in the past may be more likely to wear out quickly on your car. The following answers to frequently asked questions will help you purchase safe used tires that can last for many years.

Is it safe to buy used tires?

Used tires can range in quality from excellent to poor. Buying used tires is safe if you know what qualities to look for in a tire and how to identify damage on the tire. If you don't know how to examine an older tire for signs of wear and tear, you could unintentionally purchase a tire that will wear out more quickly than desired.

Which used tires are too worn to buy?

Badly worn tires will generally have characteristics that show structural weakness. Be on the lookout for the following warning signs:

  • Patches in the tire. Tire patches may look different from each other depending on the brand and the method of installation. Some patches resemble a rubber plug in the tire, while other patches may appear to be wider and flatter, like a patch you would find on a pair of pants. If you don't know what you're looking for, a patch in a tire can be hard to identify. Some patches look like scars or like pimples in the rubber. If you see uneven tire tread anywhere on the tire, this is an indication that the tire has a patch.
  • Rough or cracked sidewalls. Examine the sidewalls of the tire. Look for cracks or scrapes in the surface of the rubber, or look for exposed wires or cables in the sides of the tire. Cracks in the rubber are a sign that the tires are too old, while scrapes in the tire indicate that the tire scraped a curb several times in years past.
  • Insufficient tread. Stick a penny upside down into the tread. If the head of Abraham Lincoln isn't partially obscured by the tread, this is a sign that the tire is too worn to use.

For the best-quality used tires in your area, contact a used auto parts dealer like Woonsocket Auto Salvage near you. The most reputable dealers will pre-examine all tires for quality, to ensure that the tires you buy will be durable and safe.