How to Check Tire Tread Depth

Have you been driving with the same set of tires for a while and wondering, “How do I check tire tread wear?” Well, the experts at Santa Cruz Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram can help you figure this simple process out! With just a ruler or even a coin like a penny, any driver in Watsonville, Scotts Valley, and beyond can check their tire tread depth to make sure they aren’t riding on faulty tires. Find out all about how to check tire tread depth and then feel free to contact us if you have any further questions!

What is the Recommended Tire Tread Depth?

When you get a new set of regular tires, the tread depth should be just about a third of an inch, 10/32 or 11/32 of an inch. Specialized tires, like those made for off-roading and winter conditions may have deeper tire tread grooves. When your treads come to 2/32 of an inch, that’s when the U.S. Department of Transportation recommends you get a new set. When you’re driving in Capitola, taking proper care of your tires is not only safer for you and other drivers, but can lengthen the lifespan of your tires.

Testing Your Tire Treads

The best way to accurately check your tires is to use a ruler to determine the depth of the treads. However, if you don’t have a ruler with you at the time when you really feel the need to check your tires, a simple penny could also do the trick. Here’s a step-by-step walkthrough for how you can use a penny to check your tires:

  1. Place a penny with Lincoln’s head facing you into a tire tread groove.
  2. Determine if Lincoln’s head is covered and no longer visible between the grooves.
  3. If you can see all of Lincoln’s face, that means your tire treads are 2/32 inches deep or less and it’s time to replace them.
  4. Repeat this process on all four tires and in multiple locations on each tire.

Other Ways You Can Check Tire Health

Outside of a penny and ruler, there are additional tools you can get that are specifically made to check your tires, including a tire tread depth gauge and tread wear bars. These make it even easier to tell if your tire treads are as deep as they should be. On top of checking the tire tread depth, here are some other aspects of tires you can check:

  • Visible tire damage including rot and disintegration
  • Wheel alignment
  • Tire pressure

Maintain Your Tires at Santa Cruz Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram

Taking your vehicle into a service center, including ours, for regular maintenance should always include a check-up on your tires, and potentially a tire rotation. If you think it’s time you get new tires, or need advice on oil changescontact us and schedule a service appointment today!

Santa Cruz Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram -122.0033083, 36.9807329.