How To Check Your Tyre Tread Depth With A 20p Coin
The quality of your tyres and tyre tread depth will determine how well your car performs, especially in wet weather conditions when extra grip is required. Without sufficient tyre tread, your tyres will struggle to stick to the road surface, which can easily result in an accident. If you’re unfamiliar with tyre tread depths, this guide will help as it explains how to avoid tyre-related fines and check tyre tread depth using only a 20p coin.
What Is The Legal Minimum Tyre Tread Depth?
In the UK, the legal minimum tyre tread depth is 1.6mm across the central three-quarters of the tyre, around its entire circumference. While this is the minimum depth to provide acceptable levels of grip and safety, experts recommend replacing your tyres when the tread reaches 3mm.
What Is The 20p Coin Test?
The 20p coin test is a quick and easy way to check the tread depth of your tyres at home. All you need is a 20p coin and an area of flat, even ground. Once you’ve got your materials, park your car on level ground and insert the 20p coin into the main tread groove of your tyre.
If the outer band of the 20p coin is visible, your tyre tread depth is below the legal limit and needs replacing. If the entire coin is visible, then your tread is critically low and you should replace your tyres immediately. On the opposite end, if you can’t see the outer band, your tyre tread depth is within the legal limit.
Checking Your Tyre Tread Depth Regularly
It’s important to check your tyres regularly, as even a small stone or piece of debris can cause serious damage. If you’re unsure about how often to check your tyres, most experts recommend doing so at least once a month. If you find that your tyre tread is getting low, it’s important to replace your tyres as soon as possible.
Not only is it illegal to drive on tyres with insufficient tread, but it’s also incredibly dangerous. If you are caught driving on tyres that are below the legal limit, you could get a hefty fine of up to £2,500 and three points on your license per tyre. This means that if all four tyres on your vehicle are not above the legal limit of 1.6mm, you could be fined £10,000 and 12 penalty points on your license.
If you need help checking your tyre tread depth or replacing your tyres, don’t hesitate to contact a professional like Elite Garages. We will be able to advise you on the best course of action and help you get back on the road safely. For added peace of mind, why not book a free tyre check on our website?
Why Is Tyre Tread So Important?
There are several reasons why having sufficient tyre tread is vital. Firstly, it provides your car with better grip which is essential for maintaining control, especially in adverse weather conditions. Secondly, it helps to displace water from under the tyres to avoid aquaplaning – a dangerous situation where your car loses contact with the road and slides across the surface. Finally, it also reduces the risk of punctures as tyres with less tread are often more likely to pick up nails and other sharp objects.
When you buy new tyres from Elite Garages, they typically come with 8mm of tyre tread depth but it wears down over time. The time it takes depends on your driving style, the distance you travel and how often. As your tyres naturally deteriorate, so will their ability to properly grip the road surface so it’s vital to keep your tyre tread in check.
If you need new tyres, Elite Garages can help. We have over a million budget, mid-range and performance tyres in stock across the group. Our range includes tyres from all the major manufacturers so reserve your tyres online today!
Tyre Tread And Stopping Distances
It’s important to check all of your tyres regularly, as even one below the limit can pose a serious safety risk. You also need to check for any signs of damage, such as cracks or bulges in the sidewall, as these can quickly affect performance and safety. Remember, insufficient tyre tread depth impacts your stopping distances, especially in the wet.
A car with new tyres travelling at 30mph on a wet road will come to a stop in 25.9 metres. The same car travelling in the same conditions on tyres with 3 mm of tread would come to a stop in 35 metres. Even though this is the legal limit, that’s still 35% further which is quite dangerous.
If you leave your tyres to reach a minimum of 1.6mm, the stopping distance increases to 43 metres. That is nearly double the stopping distance when driving on new tyres!
Tyre Fitment At Elite Garages
This guide should have helped you to understand the importance of tyre tread depth and how to check it using a 20p coin. By looking after your tyres, you can help to keep yourself and others safe on the road while saving on fuel.
If you’re at all unsure about the condition of your tyres, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and get them checked by a professional. Choose Elite Garages as we are one of the UK’s leading fast-fit retailers and forecourt operators. We’re also a member of Group Tyre and represent more than 15% of the total tyres sold in the UK.
All of our service centres have friendly, professional and expertly-trained technicians who will make sure your tyres meet your driving requirements. To find the right tyres for your car or if you have any questions about tyre tread depth, talk to the experts at Elite Garages.