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Are 5 yr old tires safe?

My 2005 Odyssey with 55,000 miles still has its original Michelin tires. My mechanic says they don’t need to be replaced yet because they have at least 5,000 miles wear left on them. Should 5 year old tires be replaced even if they appear to be in good condition? Am I flirting with a blowout?

Probably not, unless they sit out in direct sunlight most of the time. Inspect them for signs of dry rot. If you don’t find any, you’re most likely good to go.

Answer to both your questions: Most likely.

There’s no real way to determine if 5 year old tires will fail before they reach the end of their usable tread life. There are many factors to consider, including temperatures, moisture and how hard you drive it. We cannot guess as to how long the internal making of the tires will last. I’ve had brand new tires slip belts, and old tires work just fine. It’s a coin toss, really.

If they appear to be in really good condition, and you still feel safe on them, and you have a current AAA membership (just in case), then consider keeping them.

Having said all that, is 5000 miles worth the cost to your conscience? Replacing them now will ease your mind, and you most likely still have time to save some money and buy them in a few weeks.

Was your mechanic willing to put that statement of his in writing? If so, he’s guaranteeing you they’re OK…but I doubt he did.

Good luck!

First, figure out how old your tires are. If it’s a 2005 Odyssey, they’re at least 6 years old, could be older. Google ‘tire age decoder’, and decode their seriel numbers. Let us know what you find.

55K miles on OEM tires isn’t bad - so you did get your money’s worth. Another 5K worth it? Maybe take it through the summer, and put some good-tread tires on in fall for the winter.

I’ve had Michelin tires on both our cars for the last 15 years. They normally last about 65,000 miles or so before the treads wears down. I have had only one (1) puncture, which did not result in a blowout, in all these yaers.

In all cases, when replacing the tires, there were NO CRACKS and the tires were pronounced SAFE by the vendor, usually a reputable firm. You are needlessly scaring the OP. If he had $40 tires from an unknown Chinese manufacturer I would agree with you.

In this case the mechanic is right and I would comfortable drive another 5000+ miles on these tires, provided there was no mechanical damage for sharp objects.

Tire tread wear is not like an on/off switch, with things being totally safe one minute and totally unsafe the next. Instead, as the tread wears, you will be progressively subjected to more and more problems like hydroplaning while driving in the rain and less “grip” of the road on curves.

As was already stated, the economic difference between replacing your tires now, vs replacing them in 5k miles is negligible–unless you wind up in an accident because of the inferior traction of those badly-worn tires. In the event of an accident due to diminished traction, you will wish that you had not been such a penny-pincher.

Personally, I tend to replace my tires well before the wear bars appear on the tread.
I would much rather increase my margin of safety, as opposed to supposedly saving money by deferring tire purchase for a few months.

You didn’t tell us how much tread is left, which is one important factor.

As for the age, your tires were most likely manufactured in 2004, which makes them seven years old, not five. There’s a code on them that will tell you for sure. Tire Rack’s web site has one or two articles about replacing tires due to age, so you should look for those.

If they do okay in wet weather purchase a new set just before next winter if it snows or gets icy in your parts.

If the tires are still on the car when 10 years old, then it might be time to replace them. You have another 5 years.

Five year old tires better be OK … mine are 10 years old.

Recent bulletins from the tire industry indicate that tires degrade simply due to time. The age of a tire is important even if the tire is unused. There some disagreement over how to best express this age limitation, but my take is:

If you live in a hot climate (AZ, CA, NV, TX, and FL) then the limit is six years. If you live in a cold climate (MN, ND, WI, MT, etc), then the limit is 10 years. States in between are … ah … in between.

I’m not trying to scare him. He/she did not say where they were, what kind of conditions the car is stored in, what kind of roads they drive on, nothing.

I currently live in South Texas, and 5 years is pretty good for tires down here. I had to replace my MICHELINS after 4 due to wear and cracking - mostly cracking. There was more than 5K of miles left on the tread. They were MXV4’s, and ran quite well.

It’s also a car my wife drives every day. I cannot allow her to drive on something I’m even the tiniest bit concerned about. If he’s concerned, is the negligible savings of 5K miles worth the peace of mind?

I also followed that by saying to start saving now, and put a new set on in a few weeks. Plan ahead, is all.


there is an old saying in the tire business

90% of all tire problems occur in the last 10% of the tire life.

do yourself a favor. buy some new ones. you will feel the difference in the performance of your vehicle. better traction, better handling and less chance of having one fail

I changed my 2002 Odyssey tires at 70,000 miles. 5 years is not too old.

Always good to plan ahead. You could have posed these site-specific questions to OP up front. Where I live the climate is cold in the winter and moderate in the summer. The big variable is how long the tires are exposed to bright sunlight. If we park inside, tires have a good 10 year life before they start showing any signs of rubber deterioration. The original tires on my camper (not Michelins), stored outside all year, started cracking at age 14, and we replaced them pro-actively.

My wife curently drives on 8 year old Michlins X tires in the summer and 4 year old Michlin X-ICE in the winter. Both are entirely safe. we basically go by tread wear and physical damage.

Since these are at least 6, and could easily be 7 year old tires, I’d replace them if they only have 5000 miles left. The only way to find out if they handle well in rain is to try it - if they don’t, you’re in a ditch (or worse)!

Thanks for all the comments. Tires made the 15th week of 2005. About 1/32" of tread remains at wear bars. Looks like it’s time to bight the bullet regardless of the age of the tires before the next road trip.

That’s a good idea, 1/32" at the wear bars is the right time to replace them if you want decent wet traction.

Van (and tires) has been babied in a garage in east TN. Tires look to be in good shape, but wearing close to wear bar so time to get new ones.