Do you know how old your tires are? Do you know you should ditch your tires after six years NO MATTER how much remaining tread there is or how that tread seems to look?
When the heat is on – it’s time to check your tires. Summer usually means a spike in tire blowouts because the hot road can cause tire pressure to build. Rubber breakdown is accelerated by sunlight and heat, so tread separation is increased by heat. Because of this potential danger, it is very important to check tire pressure pressure regularly. Also check more often for overall wear, tread separation and for sidewall damage. Nothing is more disconcerting – and potentially fatal – than tire failure. And nothing is more likely to cause a tire problem than an old tire!
Here is how to know the age of your tires. Information regarding the week and year the tire was produced is found by examining the last four digits of the Tire Identification Number with the 2 digits being used to identify the week immediately preceding the 2 digits used to identify the year. Example of a tire manufactured since 2000 with the current Tire Identification Number format:
DOT U2LL LMLR 5107
Manufactured during the 51st week of the year.
DOT U2LL LMLR 5107
Manufactured during 2007.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there are about 11,000 tire-related crashes that result in more than 700 deaths annually in the U.S.
Tire maintenance can keep you and your loved ones more safe when on the road this summer. It also helps protects others on the road. Perhaps you’ve been a victim of running over or having to dodge “gators.” That’s the nickname for tire treads that wind up highways after tire blowouts.
Those gators have been known to cause severe damage and accidents – posting real risks to other drivers, depending on how large the gator is, and its location in the road. Even if other vehicles manage to swerve around tire debris, the swerve can lead it into another car, truck or motorcycle, or can cause the driver to lose control and roll their vehicle.
More tips from the NHTSA about tire safety:
- Only 19 percent of consumers properly check and inflate their tires (when your tire pressure light comes on, you’re tires are typically 25 percent BELOW pressure for safe operation).
- Underinflated tires lower gas mileage by 0.3% for every 1 pound per square inch (psi) drop in pressure.
- Keeping your tires properly inflated can save you up to 11 cents a gallon.
- In 2017 alone 738 people died in tire-related crashes.
- You should rotate your tires every 5,000 – 8,000 miles.
- 1 in 4 cars has at least one tire that is significantly underinflated.
- If you see tire debris on a state highway that could be a danger to your fellow motorists, make sure to call 911 to ensure someone can respond quickly to remove it.
For more NHTSA tips: https://www.nhtsa.gov/equipment/tires#topic-maintenance
I know that tires fail. Even when you check them often. When tire failure leads to an injury accident – we can help. I have successfully brought cases against General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, Nissan, Honda, Toyota, Goodyear Tire, Cooper Tire, Michelin, Continental Tire, Yokohama Tire, and Bridgestone/Firestone Tire. These cases have resulted in tens of millions of dollars in settlements for injured individuals and their families.
Be safe this summer. If tire failure should strike and you or a loved one is injured, call me at (480) 344-0957.