How to Check Tire Tread Depth

Checking Tire Tread Depth

Tires are one of the most important parts of your vehicle. Your tires’ condition is directly linked to how well you’ll be able slow down and safely come to a complete stop. Checking your tire tread depth is the best way to see what kind of shape they’re in and if you need to get them replaced. So, how do you check the tread depth?

To help drivers in Gulfport, Pascagoula, and Waveland know when it’s time for new tires, Pat Peck Nissan looks at how to check your tire tread depth.

How to Check Tire Tread Depth

Tire tread serves the same purpose as the tread on the bottom of your shoes. It helps the tires grip the road and provide traction during your drive. After a few thousand miles, all tires will eventually wear down. That’s why they need to be regularly rotated and replaced.

Continuing to drive on old, worn-out tires can be dangerous. The U.S. Department of Transportation recommends that they should be replaced when the tread wears down to 2/32 of an inch. Luckily, there are three easy ways you can measure your tread depth at home:

  • Penny Tire TestThe Penny Test – The most famous tire test might also be the easiest. All you need is a single penny. Take the coin and look at the heads side. Then, turn it upside down and insert it into the tire’s tread. What you’re looking for is how far you can push the penny into the tread. If most of President Lincoln’s head is obscured by the tread, your tire is in good shape. If you can see all of Honest Abe, your tread has likely worn down to 2/32 of an inch or less.
  • Tread Wear Indicator Bars – Another way to check your tire tread is to look closely at the lines in between it. All tires are made with a series of raised bars going across the width of your tread. Look closely at these wear indicator bars and compare them with how high the tread looks. If they’re level with one another, or close to being on the same level, you should probably get new tires.
  • Tread Depth Gauge – The last way to check your tire tread depth is also the most exact. If you buy a tread depth gauge, you’ll be able to get a definitive measurement of how worn your tires are. This tool looks like a pen with a wide, flat bottom. Sticking out from that, there’s a thin probe. Stick the probe into the tread and push down. As you push, the top of the gauge will show you how deep your tread is with a small measuring stick.

Nissan Dealership Tire Center

Visit Pat Peck Nissan when you need new tires or a routine tire rotation. We have a large inventory of quality tires and a team of highly trained technicians in our service center. With proper tread you’ll have effective tires that can help you safely slow down and stop during all your drives around Gulfport, Pascagoula, and Waveland. To learn more about how to check tire tread depth, contact us or schedule your service appointment today.