Read this in the Detroit News today, that Chrysler says to replace the tires including the spare, because of physical breakdown and SAFETY.
I did not know this about tires, but can see their point from a safety and legal aspect.
OK, whatdaya think?
I guess Im stupid for riding 20 year old, super low mileage motorcycles with their origional tires at god knows what speed in my youth. If any Volvo owners are out there, it would be interesting to note if Volvo has this subject covered in their owners manual.
Like all rules of thumb, there are exceptions.
If a car sat out in the Arizona sunlight all day long, maybe 6 years would be too long.
However, if I had a vehicle that I seldom drove, I would use nitrogen to fill the tires to reduce internal oxidation, and try to keep the tires out of the sunlight.
A motorcycle on its center stand puts relatively small loads on only one tire, and no load on the other tire.
If anyone is interested the DOT requires the date a tire was manufactured to be stamped on it. If your tire was made after 2000 it has a 4 digit code with the first 2 digits being the week it was made and the last 2 being the year. If it was made before 2000 it has a 3 digit code with the last digit being the year. Just a little public service announcement.
Check the tires for cracks if they are old. If they aren't cracked they should be okay. I've seen tons of tires that are cracked to bits on bikes, RVs, and trailers. They will blow up on you eventually. A spare tire that's living out of the reach of the sun will not go bad but it will deflate. Just pump it up every year.
Just some food for thought:
I've seen tires go bad while they were in the trunk, so there has to be some deterioration over time.
GM's statement seems to say they agree there is a aging deterioration, but they did not commit themselves to a number.
Most of us in this forum (and other forums like this one) actually pay attention to our vehicles and the tires on them. I wonder what can be done about those folks who don't - especially the ones who are agressively ignore their vehicles and then complain when bad things happen to them.
I do believe that UV damage can occur. I have some old tires that just wouldn't hold pressure, which I attributed to the rubber ageing.
Even if this is the case, any recommendation by the car companies will need to err on the conservative side, because tire compounds change regularly, I know of no regularly used test for rating the tires on this factor, and not only geographic conditions but storage conditions vary all over the place. Some people garage their cars at night and park in a garage at work. Some cars spend their entire life out in the sun.
Here's some actual data. My car has some Bridgestone tires made in February 2000 and they are showing quite a few minor cracks in them. The cracks are not deep yet but I despise these tires so much that this will be their last summer. My car has been outside all its life and the tires came from Costco so they were probably installed within 6 months of being produced. (My guess) Perhaps the 6 year rule is pretty close to real life after all. I've got some other tires that are really cracked up that I'll check later on.
It's always good to have a "heads-up" from those concerned with safety, with liability.
All machines deteriorate with time. Some components or systems faster than others. For example, few HVAC systems in cars are in "outstanding" condition past six or seven years. Most are in need of component replacements.
Six years seems long enough, even for a collector car seeing 2500-miles annually. After all, what is the likely cost of repairing a vehicle after a blow-out, loss of steering/braking control, and accident? What is the cost to "repair" the occupants of this and other vehicles?
So, okay: 6-years or 4/32's remaining tread with no other damage affecting safety/performance. Seems little different than 6-mos/6000 on an oil change minimum (one I've used for many years on collector cars).
I might quibble with the recommendation, but prudence (and not being an industry engineer) leads me go along with this until or unless other other information succeeds it.
At the least, any vehicle with low annual miles deserves to be driven very, very gently for the first fifteen miles leaving storage after one has made a physical inspection of the tire exterior. Those tires need to heat up just as much as the fluids we're accustomed to thinking about. Probably a good idea to use an infrared heat gun to check for hot spots at the fifteen mile mark, and again when higher speeds have been run for, say, another fifteen miles.
Any other ideas to "determining" condition?
Any other ideas to "determining" condition?
yeah, I always kick them first, just to make sure they don't collapse on me...
I'm pretty sure someone came up with that one before me though
I have some Dunlop Radial rovers on my 89 Nissan truck. They have a little less than half tread and about 65k miles on them at this point. They were installed in Jan-98, which puts about 6.5 years on them now.
The advice about driving slow the first few miles is good advice- for tires as much as everything else. Those Dunlops have always taken maybe 20 miles to work out the flat spots even when they were new, I'm not sure they were ever actually round...I'm pretty sure they are not very round now though, and definitely hardened up. I only drive that truck for local short trips these days, if I have to drive it any further than maybe 30 miles away I'll probably put new ones on first.
I have some tires purchase for my TR3 in 1970. Still no cracks etc but I did replace them in 2001 with about 70,000 miles but still good tread. Michlen zx's look like they would have lasted forever if you wanted them to. I had bridgestones purchased in 1999 that where cracked in 2002 so lots of variables in the life of a tire. If you garage your car most of the time and use a car cover that does extend their life. UV rays are what gets most tires that don't wear out. Can't imagine a spare tire in a dark trunk ever wearing out. Just keep air in the thing and it will last forever.
Okay, I've had an old car or two (beyond twenty years) where I did pull out the original spare and run it for a while. Never was comfortable doing it, but young, single, needed-to-keep-beer-money . . . .
I am replacing the tires on my grandmas 1988 dode aries which are around 18 years old was garaged and has 12,800 miles. I had a blow out last night, i'd rather it happen to me than to her but these tires have been on the life of the car and MUST be replaced. The tires are 3 years older than me LOL.