Ways to Test Your Tires’ Tread Depth

It’s important to test your tire tread depth regularly so you know when it’s time to get a new set of tires. Specifically, in Pennsylvania, once your tire tread reaches 2/32-of-an-inch, you need to get a new set of tires or you run the risk of receiving a moving violation. York Tire & Auto Service is going to explain three different ways you can test your tire tread depth below. One is a general measurement, and the other two are more specific for those looking for exact measurements.

Penny Test

A general way to check to see if you need a new set of tires is to do the penny tire tread test. This test requires a shiny penny and nothing more. Grab one out of your pocket or wallet and head to your automobile. Make sure your automobile is parked in an area where there is plenty of light. Turn the penny so that the head side is facing you. Insert the penny with the top of President Lincoln’s head going into the tire tread row. If your tire tread covers President Lincoln, you don’t need new tires. If you can see all of Abraham Lincoln’s head, you need new tires.

Gauge Test

To get a specific reading, head to the auto parts store and purchase a tire tread gauge. Perform the tests the same way you would the penny tire tread test. You’re going to insert the gauge in between the tread rows on each tire in several locations to get the readings. If there is any reading under the legal limit, you need to replace your tires. Remember, in Pennsylvania, all tires must have at least 2/32-of-an-inch of tread on them.

This being said, many experts agree that once the tire tread reaches 4/32-of-an-inch, it’s dangerous to continue driving on your automobile’s tires. Even though you still have a little bit of tread left to meet the legal limits, your tires do not have enough tread to grip the road properly.

Professional Test

Finally, if you don’t want to be bothered with either of the two methods above, bring your vehicle into our shop and we will measure the tire tread for you. We will inspect the tires to check for uneven tire tread wear as well as any other problems such as cracking or bubbling, and we will also make sure you have plenty of air in each tire, including the spare.

Look no further than York Tire & Auto Service in Red Lion, PA, for all of your vehicle’s tire and automotive service needs.

Photo by MWCPhoto from Getty Images via Canva Pro

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