I don’t drive enough miles to wear out tires. How long are tires good for? I have a 97 Buick Le Sabre that has 7 year old tires, with approximately 10 to 15000 miles on them. Plenty of tread, no weather cracks yet. Is there a certain time limit where I should get new ones?
Neither do I on some vehicles yet my 1979 truck with merely 70,000 miles is on it’s third set.
There’s no single answer due to so many variables for everyone.
How the’ve been used, and stored.
Kept inside our out, southwest sunshine or northeast clouds & cold.
Rubber ages even unused just like the soles of those old boat shoes, they don’t flex like before and the old hard compound has a definitive loss of grip.
Tires are built in layers and the old un-flexible compound will start to separate internally …the layers will come apart…merely from the flex of daily driving.
Yes , all tires flex…with each and every rotation.
The loss of flex greatly increases the chance of a blowout under conditions that wouldn’t stress a new tire like pot holes, surprize swerves, and high speeds.
The industry suggests 10 years on well kept tires , 6 otherwise.
An un-sold shelf-new tire will have NO new tire warranty at 6 years old.
How old are yours ? look for the DOT# on the side wall of each. Kind of near the inner edge near the bead is a 12 or 11 digit set of numbers and letters usually seperated in three goups. The last four is the production date ie; 1105 is the 11th week ( edit , oops ) of 2005. If you see only 8 digits look on the oposite side of the tire.
( I sold some just today with DOT# APV9-M711-3810 )
Add to my opinion with a google search “when to replace old tires”.
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.
So you may already be over the limit depending on where you live.
Much of this depends on the tire construction also…Passenger-car tires with one or two ply sidewalls Don’t have to degrade very much before they fall apart…I have an old 1-ton Dodge water truck I keep down in Mexico…It is supported by 6 - twenty year old 10 ply nylon tires that still do the job…
If you are in doubt, take it to a garage you can trust and have tires inspected. Yes, they do age when not in use, but if they aren’t exposed to the sun and other environmental factors, and you keep them properly inflated, then there is no hard and fast rule. They could last much longer and still remain safe under proper conditions. A good tire man can tell.
“The last four is the production date ie; 1105 is the 11th month of 2005. If you see only 8 digits look on the oposite side of the tire.”
I understand that the date is the week and year of manufacture, not the month and year.
The way I understand it is If the tire has a three digit number it was made prior to the year 2000. Example 279 = 27 th week of 1999
if the tire has a four digit number it was made after 1999. Example 3810 = 38th week of 2010