A new survey reveals many motorists knowingly drive with their car tyres in illegal condition, while even more don’t know how to check them.
Around 13 percent of respondents in a poll by Halfords Autocentres said they had knowingly driven on tyres with illegal tread depths. Just over a quarter (27 percent) said they hadn’t checked their tyre tread in the last three months, while 42 percent said they didn’t know how to.
In total, 65 percent said they didn’t know the rules around worn tyres.
Tyre tread depth: the rules
October is Tyre Safety Month, so what better time to make sure yours are up to standard? A tread depth of 1.6mm across the central three quarters of the tyre is the legal minimum. In fact, experts recommend tyres be replaced when the tread wears below 3mm.
Not adhering to the rules on tread depth could land you with a £2,500 fine and three penalty points PER TYRE. That’s a potential £10,000 fine and a lost licence for four illegal tyres.
Also, make sure there are no tears, and that the rubber isn’t cracking or perishing. Check the date on your tyres to make sure they’re still at their best and look out for flat-spots. Keeping your car’s suspension alignment in check will maximise the life of your tyres.
“We were surprised to find that so many Brits are driving with tyres below the legal tread depth,” said Halfords Autocentres expert, Martin Barber.
“Tread depth can reduce braking and steering ability especially in unpredictable weather and wet driving conditions. After completing millions of tyre checks to help keep Britain’s cars on the roads, we’re proud to offer a free tyre check for every motorist.”