Test Your Tire Tread Depth Now So You Can Get New Tires Before Winter

If you haven’t done so already, test your tire tread depth now to make sure you have plenty left for winter’s rain and snow. Driving on slick roads with bald tires is sure to put you in danger. The tires cannot maintain their grip on the road, which will cause you to hydroplane. If you end up causing an automobile accident that is deemed to be your fault, you may have to answer to more than your insurance company if your tires are bald. Ideal Automotive explains a couple of easy ways to test your tire tread depth below, so please keep reading.

Tire Tread Depth Gauge

If you’d like an accurate reading of your tire tread depth, head to an auto parts store and purchase a tire tread depth gauge. This gauge will give you an accurate reading of the tread depth left on your tires to the 32nd-of-an-inch, and the law in Blaine, MN, requires you to replace your tires once the depth is as low as 2/32-of-an-inch. If you prefer the metric system, the depth can go no lower than 1.6 millimeters.

Penny Test

If you’re cool with generalities, you can also test your tire tread depth with a penny or a quarter. It’s important to understand that this test is general; you won’t get the accurate reading you would from a tread depth gauge. Still, the penny test will give you a basic idea of how low your tire tread is and whether you should invest in a new set of tires now. To perform the penny tread test

  • Park your car outside in the sunshine and set the parking brake
  • Put the vehicle in park and turn off the engine
  • Block the tires if you’re parked on an incline
  • Grab a penny or quarter with a clear head side
  • Insert the penny head-side up between the tread rows
  • Do this all around each tire and the spare
  • Read the measurements per the instructions below

To read the measurements, look at the president’s head each time you insert the penny or quarter between the tread rows. If the tire tread covers Presidents Lincoln or Washington’s heads, you still have tire tread. If you can see the top of either president’s head, you’ve got low tire tread depth and you need to replace your tires now before the roads get wet and icy.

Ideal Automotive in Blaine, MN, can help if you need new tires, so give us a call today.

Photo by BobYue from Getty Images Canva Pro

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