Tire care is essential to driving safety. Tire tread depth is especially important when it comes to controlling your vehicle.
A tire that lacks the proper tread depth won't be able to properly grip the road. A tire that can't hold onto the road will slide and take longer to brake. A vehicle that needs extensive space to stop is at risk for an accident. An accident could increase your car insurance rates.
Check Your Tire Tread Depth at Regular Intervals
Let an automotive professional checked your tires' tread depth regularly. In general, tire tread that is 6/32 of an inch or better will provide ample traction and performance.
If the tire tread depth is 5/32 of an inch or 4/32 of an inch or less, it might not be able to properly grip the road. This is especially true during wet weather like rain, hail or snowy conditions. A tire that can't hold onto the road during wet weather stands a good chance of hydroplaning. If your vehicle hydroplanes, you won't be able to steer it as it will slide across the water until hitting an object or connecting with a dry portion of the road.
Tire Tread Depth for Stopping Distance
Hydroplaning is only one concern when it comes to tire tread depth. The failure to stop in a timely manner puts you and everyone else in the vehicle at risk.
A tire with sufficient tread depth will come to a halt in a reasonable distance. You need to stop your vehicle as quickly as possible in all sorts of instances.
Consider a situation in which the driver ahead of you is not paying attention to the road. He slams on his brakes at the last moment to avoid a rear end collision with the vehicle ahead of him. As a result, you slam on your brakes. If you can't stop in a reasonable distance, you will smash into the back of the vehicle ahead of you. Imagine a situation in which a child or dog runs into the road in front of your vehicle. If your tire tread is below 6/32 of an inch, you might not be able to stop in time to avoid a collision.
Check Your Tire Tread Depth
You can conduct a DIY (do it yourself) tire tread depth test or bring your vehicle to the professionals for a test. Professionals usually do not charge any sort of fee for this test.
If you want to check your tire tread depth on your own, place a penny with Abraham Lincoln's head down into the tire groove. If you can't see part of his head, you have a minimum of 2/32 of an inch of tire tread. However, tire tread depth below 5/32 of an inch is cause for concern. If you suspect your tire tread depth is near this level, do not hesitate to have your tires replaced. The installation of new tires might prevent an accident that increases your auto insurance rates.
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