For the average driver, tyres are usually an emergency purchase, and knowing what tyres to choose can be overwhelming. There’s lots of technical names from different manufacturers all promising the best in class performance at different prices. We’re here to bring some clarity to the most frequently asked questions about tyres.
How Do I Find Out My Tyre Size?
Your tyre size will be displayed on the sidewall (the side of the tyre that is visible to you), alongside the name of the tyre and brand. The numbers and letters shown on the side represent the different sizes that make up the tyre fitment.
Label A on the diagram above represents the tyre Section. In this case, it’s number 185, which indicates the width of the tyre in millimetres.
Label B shows the tyre Profile, which is the height of the sidewall, represented as a percentage of the width of the tyre tread. In this example it is 65%.
Label C is the Rim diameter, measured in inches. In this case, it’s 14. The R also seen here indicates that it is a radial tyre.
There are additional numbers on the sidewall not shown in this image, which display the Load Index and Speed Rating of the tyre. The Load Index shows how much weight the tyre can hold. The Speed Rating shows how fast the tyre can run and is represented by a letter. The speed rating for passenger cars starts at letter T and goes up to letter Y, depending on the vehicle type and performance level.
How Many Miles Will My Tyres Last?
This question very much depends on the way you drive and what vehicle you drive. If you often break heavily or drive a heavy car then naturally the tyres will wear quicker than those on a light compact vehicle. It’s recommended that you change your tyres after 20,000 miles, however if your tyres still meet the legal limits with a large amount of tread left, then consult your local garage for advice on whether they are still safe to drive on.
Our range of tyres are designed to provide optimal performance with high mileage capability, thanks to the advanced silica compound design. The LS588 is a great example of a high mileage and performance tyre, and the commercial offerings such as the LSV88 provide exceptional mileage for vans, alongside superior wet weather grip.
How Often Should I Check My Tyres?
Tyres should be checked once a month, or before every long journey.
Listen for any hissing sounds as this could be a sign of a puncture. Check the tread and make sure that the tyre isn’t ‘bald’ or flat. Also look for any cracks on the sidewall to make sure that the rubber isn’t beginning to perish. If you’re unsure of what to look for or find something you think is unusual, be sure to visit your local garage for advice.
What Happens If I Don’t Replace My Tyres?
It’s important to keep on top of your tyre maintenance and replace them when needed. If you don’t, it can not only be dangerous, but also expensive.
If you are stopped by the police and they see that your tread limit doesn’t reach the required level of 1.6 millimetres across three quarters of the tyre, you can be fined up to £2,500 and given three points on your licence, per tyre. To be sure your tyres are road legal, you can test them by placing a 20 pence coin in the tyre grooves.
Place the coin in the main tread groove of the tyre and if the outer band of the 20p is obscured, then your tyre is within the legal limit. Make sure to repeat the process around the groove of the tyre. If you’re not sure how much tread you’ve got left, then seek professional advice.
What Tyres Suit My Car?
Different cars need different tyres, with a performance car needing wider tyres that will keep the car on the road at speed, whereas a trailer or caravan will have entirely different size tyres to fit the needs of a heavy load vehicle.
Each product on our website tells you what kind of tyre it is and what kind of vehicle it suits, from the all-season CLV2, which is optimised for on-road SUV applications and providing great grip no matter the condition, to the LS188, the tyre designed to give your small city car low noise output alongside effective fuel efficiency.
For more information about our full tyre range, take a look here.