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For many years, the only way to determine if tires needed to be replaced was the use the ‘penny test’, which involves sticking a penny (or a quarter) into the tread of a tire. If you can see the head of the person on the penny, your tires are too worn and the treads are too shallow, meaning that the tread depth is less than 2/32 of an inch and it’s time to replace your tires. If the top of the head on the penny is covered, it means that the treads in your tire are deep enough to continue the use of the tire and that you’ll have some time before you need to replace them. While this is a good way to tell if your tires are too worn to continue using, that’s not the only reason you might need to swap out your old tires for a brand-new set.

How Long Do Tires Last? - Formula Honda in Scarborough

How Long Do Tires Last?

As a general rule of thumb, the tires on a vehicle you drive fairly often will likely last you about 3 to 5 years or approximately 75 000 – 100 000 km. The shelf life of a tire will majorly depend on how often the car is driven. The less often a vehicle is driven, the longer its tires will last. All tires expire eventually, which is why our Service Departments recommend replacing all tires once they get too old (even if they haven’t already been replaced, aren’t fully worn down, the tire is a spare, or the tires are in storage), if they haven't already been replaced for another reason. This is because as the tire gets older, the rubber starts to crack and cause parts of the tire to separate from each other.

How Long Do Tires Last? - Formula Honda in Scarborough

With that being said, there’s no exact way to tell how long a tire is going to last since it almost completely depends on environmental and other external factors. This can include climate, driving habits, road conditions, and tire maintenance. For example, if you drive in extreme temperatures, speed on damaged roads, and neglect tire maintenance, your tires likely won’t last as long as the average tire would.

Using a Spare Tire

Spare tires are great to have in the event of an emergency, like blowing a tire on the way to work or hitting a sharp object on the 401. What they aren’t good for, is being used on a day-to-day basis. Newer models of vehicles generally don’t have a full-sized spare tire; instead they have a smaller ‘space-saving’ tire (also known as a donut) that have less tread than your car’s full-sized tires. These tires are only built to last long enough to get your car to a mechanic or dealership and can only be driven up to 100 km at a maximum speed of 80 km/h before their tread wears out.

How Long Do Tires Last? - Formula Honda in Scarborough

At Formula Honda in Scarborough, we have thousands of tires, both OEM tires for your Honda as well as aftermarket tires from multiple brands including: BF Goodrich, Bridgestone, Continental, Dunlop, Firestone, General Tire, Gislaved, Goodyear, Hankook, Kelly Tires, Michelin, Toyo Tires, Uniroyal and Yokohama Tires. You can take a look at our selection of tires here or take a look at our winter tire packages here.

If you’re interested in taking a closer look at the importance of winter tires (especially during Canadian winters), click here.