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October is here and with it comes bad weather. For the next few months we’ll surely spend a lot of time driving in the rain, but have you checked to make sure your tyres are safe and prepared for these conditions?
Tread depth is one of the most important checks to make, it’s what allows your tyres to clear the water between the outer tyre surface (contact patch) and the road. If the tread depth is too low you run the risk of aquaplaning, an extremely dangerous situation where your tyres are no longer making contact with the road due to the water.
During an aquaplane you will lose all ability to turn, brake and accelerate – it’s like you are sliding on ice. If this happens while cornering you will likely spin the vehicle and slide off the road.
You should check the tread depth of your tyres at least once a month. Not only is running a low depth dangerous, it’s also illegal! The UK minimum tread depth is 1.6mm, if you are caught with a depth lower than this you could end up with a fine of up to £2,500 and three penalty points on your license for each illegal tyre!
Video explaining the cause and effects of aquaplaning, courtesy of TyreSafe
A simple check to perform is the 20p test. Slide a 20p coin into the main tread grooves of your tyre, if the outer band of the coin is obscured then your tread is above the legal limit. If however, you can see the outer band of the coin when it’s placed in the groove then your tyres may be illegal and unsafe to drive on and should be checked immediately by a qualified professional. You should perform this test on all the grooves around each tyre to make sure they are legal all the way around.
While checking the tread depth also take this time to inspect each tyre for bulges and cuts, and remove any foreign objects such as stones.
If you are concerned that your tyres do not meet the legal tread depth limit, call Tyred and Exhausted today on 01296 432552 and we will be happy to help with your tyres Aylesbury!