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The importance of tyre age as well as tread depth

Tyre age and tread depth

If you drive relatively few miles every year, you might find that your tread depth remains fairly intact for several years. But, importantly, that doesn’t mean your tyres are roadworthy.

How to check your tyre age

1.  Look for the markings on your tyre’s sidewall

2.  Find a four-digit code

3.  The third and fourth numbers indicate the year of manufacture

4. If this is longer than 10 years ago, we recommend you replace your tyres

What happens when tyres age?

All-weather tyres tyres

As tyres age, they begin to crack in their sidewalls. This happens when UV light oxidises the rubber, causing it to dry out. Although tyres contain anti-oxidising chemicals to slow this process down, these only work when the tyres are moving. If your car is left unused for some time, or your tyres are stored away, they’ll deteriorate faster than if they’re used frequently.

What if I can’t remember when I had them fitted?

All-weather tyres tyres

The good news is that you don’t have to rely on your memory to work out your tyre age. Their ‘date of birth’ is written on the tyre sidewall. 

Look out for a four-digit code. The first two figures represent the calendar week in which it was made (from 1 to 52) and the second two figures are the year of manufacture. So a code of 1316 would mean your tyre was made between 28th March and 3rd April 2016.

Tyres manufactured before the year 2000 show three figures instead of four.

When is my tyre age considered too old?

All-weather tyres tyres

We recommend that all tyres are replaced when they reach ten years old, regardless of the depth of the tread.

Even if the tyre still looks good, we recommend you seek the advice of your local Uniroyal fitter if your car, or your tyres, have been unused for a long period of time. This applies to your spare tyre too. The fitter can look out for signs of premature ageing and advise you if your tyre is safe.

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