Tyre care is an important area of car maintenance.
But apart from ensuring correct tyre pressures and maintaining tyre cleanliness, tyre tread depth is significant, too.
Here are the reasons why you need to pay attention it.
Tyre tread depth determines your car’s performance.
Your tyre’s contact patch is about the size of the palm of an adult hand.
The contact patch is always in contact with the road.
It lets you put down the power, grips the road and determines braking distances.
Crucially, tread depth has a direct influence on how good a tyre can be at displacing water.
The deeper the channels, the more water can be displaced. And the better the tyre can grip the road in wet conditions.
Tyre care means periodically checking the tread depth!
Part of your tyre maintenance regime should be checking your tyres’ tread depths.
If you don’t have a tread depth gauge (as seen in the photo above), check the tread wear indicators instead.
The wear indicator is usually a little triangle. When the tread is worn to the top tip of the triangle, it is time to change your tyres!
Can’t I just keep driving with worn tyres?
Technically you could. But apart from being dangerous it is also illegal.
The Land Transport Authority (LTA) requires car owners to maintain a minimum tread depth of 1.6mm.
Tyre care doesn’t just involve meeting the minimum tread depth.
When you check your tyres, you should also watch for uneven wear patterns.
For example, if the tyres’ shoulders (the outer part of the tyre) are more worn than the centre part, you may have suspension issues.
Send your vehicle to a qualified mechanic or workshop as soon as possible.
Part of good tyre care is ensuring uniform tyre wear.
This is why it is important to rotate your tyres, too.