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AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth #4780970
06/08/18 07:34 AM
06/08/18 07:34 AM
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 6,576
Huntington Beach, CA
tenderloin Offline OP
tenderloin  Offline OP
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 6,576
Huntington Beach, CA
AAA 4/32 Tire Replacement

RLANDO, Fla.— Citing safety concerns related primarily to wet braking, AAA Inc. is recommending consumers replace their worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth.

Nationwide car owners' club AAA is basing its stance on the results of tests it conducted recently on new and worn tires, which showed significant increases in braking distances in wet conditions as tires wear.

"Tires are what keep a car connected to the road," John Nielsen, AAA's managing director of automotive engineering and repair, said.

"Even the most advanced safety systems rely on a tire's basic ability to maintain traction, and AAA's testing shows that wear has a significant impact on how quickly a vehicle can come to a stop in wet conditions to avoid a crash."

AAA conducted its testing in partnership with the Automobile Club of Southern California's Automotive Research Center. Those tests compared the wet braking performance of new all-season tires and those worn to a tread depth of 4/32nds inch.

According to the tests, tires worn to a tread depth of 4/32nds inch exhibit the following, compared with a new tire:

• An average increased stopping distance at highway speeds of 87 feet for a passenger car and 86 feet for a light truck; and

• A 33-percent reduction in handling ability, for a passenger car and 28 percent for the light truck on average.

AAA's testing involved a Toyota Camry and Ford F-150.

Tires tested on the Camry were: Nexen Classe Premiere CP671; Goodyear Eagle Sport; Fuzion Touring; Pirelli Cinturato All-Season Plus; Kumho Ecsta 4X II; and Michelin Premier A/S.

Tires tested on the Ford F-150 were: Firestone Destination LE II; Bridgestone Dueler H/L Alenza Plus (113T); Cooper Evolution H/T (115T); Michelin Defender LTX M/S (115T); Hankook Dyanpro RH12 (113T); and Goodyear Wrangler Fortitude HT (115T).

The complete results are available on AAA's website.

"AAA's testing demonstrates the impact that tire tread has on safety," Megan McKernan, manager of the Automobile Club of Southern California's Automotive Research Center, said.

"If tested side-by-side at 60 mph, vehicles with worn tires would still be traveling at an alarming 40 mph when reaching the same distance it takes for vehicles with new tires to make a complete stop."

AAA said its research found that tire performance does vary by brand, but price is not necessarily an indicator of quality. Worn tire performance deteriorated significantly for all tires tested, including those at a higher price point.

AAA advises shoppers to research options carefully before selecting a replacement tire for their vehicle, and never choose one based on price alone.

"With newer cars going longer intervals between routine maintenance at automotive service facilities, drivers may not become alerted to the fact their tires are too worn until it's too late," Mr. Nielsen said.

AAA's comprehensive evaluation of tire tread laws and regulations across U.S. states found state requirements range from inadequate to non-existent.

Forty-two states consider 2/32nds inch the minimum legal tread depth. California and Idaho have set the minimum at 1/32nd, while Arkansas, Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Carolina and West Virginia have no legal mininum standards.

The AAA's recommendation is in contrast with Michelin North America Inc.'s contention that removing tires prematurely from service costs consumers billions of dollars and increases the amount of scrap tires to be dealt with.

Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: tenderloin] #4780972
06/08/18 07:35 AM
06/08/18 07:35 AM
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 13,861
Illinois
tig1 Online content
tig1  Online Content
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 13,861
Illinois
Where I come from we call it 1/8.


2007 Ford Fusion 232,000 miles
M1 0-20 EP
2017 Ford Fusion 58K
M1 0-20 EP
10,000 mile OCIs on both engines
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Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: tenderloin] #4780981
06/08/18 07:56 AM
06/08/18 07:56 AM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 12,682
NH
supton Offline
supton  Offline
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 12,682
NH
When I get to 4/32's I start thinking about replacing. Nothing new here, I thought AAA (and others?) had been pressing for this for years?

Between 2/32's and 4/32's I adjust my driving, knowing that traction might be lowered in rain. Before anyone yells at me that I should remove "unsafe" tires--a similar argument could be said to buy the car with the shortest stopping distance, and anything longer than that is putting everyone at risk. And that driving a twenty year old car is automatically unsafe simply because it's been surpassed.


2011 Toyota Camry, base, 2.5L/6MT, 169k, hers
2010 Toyota Tundra DC, 4.6L/6AT, 144k, ours
1999 Toyota Camry LE, 2.2L/4AT, 192k, his
Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: tenderloin] #4780989
06/08/18 08:00 AM
06/08/18 08:00 AM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 20,833
Upstate NY
Donald Offline
Donald  Offline
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 20,833
Upstate NY
I think at 4/32" one should be making their plan to get the tires replaced in the near term. And of course if a Subaru symmetric AWD then all 4 tires need replacement.


2015 Subaru Forester 2.5 engine/CVT
2015 Ford F250 w/Powerstroke
2016 Subaru Crosstrek CVT (wife's)
Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: tenderloin] #4780993
06/08/18 08:05 AM
06/08/18 08:05 AM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 8,914
Virginia Beach
Astro14 Offline
Astro14  Offline
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 8,914
Virginia Beach
I replace them at 4/32 most of the time, as that's the depth at which wet performance begins to significantly degrade.

Legal minimum and safe aren't the same thing, most of the time...


32 Packard 15W40
02 Volvo V70 T5 0W40 M1
02 Volvo V70 XC 0W40 Edge
05 MB S600 0W40 M1
16 Tundra 1794 5W30 Pennzoil Ultra
Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: tig1] #4780998
06/08/18 08:06 AM
06/08/18 08:06 AM
Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 12,039
Idaho
CT8 Online content
CT8  Online Content
Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 12,039
Idaho
Originally Posted By: tig1
Where I come from we call it 1/8.
4/32 sounds more high tech.


2015 Ford F150 2.7
2018 Ford F350 6.2
Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: tenderloin] #4781005
06/08/18 08:14 AM
06/08/18 08:14 AM
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 41,215
'Stralia
Shannow Online content
Shannow  Online Content
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 41,215
'Stralia
Sad thing is that the tread wear bars alter (not by much, but they do) the wet weather performance of tyres.

But by defining the legal minimum, they at least give something to quantify compliance to an arbitrary definition of safety...a "go-nogo" principal that can be applied at the side of the road.

(used to be "match heads" down here..if a match head could be hidden in the tread over 75% of the tread area, they were legal).

at 275 thousandths, the Deuller H/Ts on my Colorado failed my wet weather standards...and I replaced them

Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: tenderloin] #4781008
06/08/18 08:18 AM
06/08/18 08:18 AM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 10,390
ROCHESTER, NY
Char Baby Offline
Char Baby  Offline
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 10,390
ROCHESTER, NY
This is why I always say that half tread is actually 6/32nds.
If most passenger tires(generally) start out at 10/32nds, and are only good(by law) down to 2/32nds, then 6/32nd is our(OUR) real 1/2 tread mark. Not according to the tire industry or safety organizations but, to me. Think about it!

Others have disagreed & will continue to disagree with me.

I too start thinking about buying new tires somewhere between 5-6/32nds and depending on the season, I'll get rid of them by 3-4/32nds.


"Retired"
-----------------------------------

'80 Firebird FORMULA V8/4bbl-purchased "NEW"
'15 Nissan Altima 2.5 SV
'15 Honda Civic LX
Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: tenderloin] #4781010
06/08/18 08:18 AM
06/08/18 08:18 AM
Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 12,493
The Old North State
Sayjac Offline
Sayjac  Offline
Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 12,493
The Old North State
Quote:
Where I come from we call it 1/8.

If one looks a standard tire tread depth gauge, the gradations are by 32nds.

So 4/32nds basically saying the quarter test now more appropriate than the penny test.

Corresponds to display sign information now found in DT stores.

https://www.discounttire.com/learn/tire-safety


Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: tenderloin] #4781042
06/08/18 08:51 AM
06/08/18 08:51 AM
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,475
San Antonio, Texas
sasilverbullet Offline
sasilverbullet  Offline
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,475
San Antonio, Texas
Nothing new, Porsche has been preaching this for 30 years. They do their own tire studies/research.


03 Porsche 911 Liqui Moly Leichtlauf High Tech 5w-40 & Mahle filter
14 Honda Accord 4dr EX-L 4cyl-M1 0W-20 & WIX XP
02 Chevy 5.7L van-GTX HM 10W-40 & WIX filter
Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: tenderloin] #4781047
06/08/18 08:55 AM
06/08/18 08:55 AM
Joined: May 2009
Posts: 12,250
N.H, U.S.A.
ARCOgraphite Offline
ARCOgraphite  Offline
Joined: May 2009
Posts: 12,250
N.H, U.S.A.
Usually when mine are at 1/8 in the center, they are showing the belts and cord on the edge smile


2014 Nissan Rogue S CVT, OC#9 41392mi-QSUD10W30 + M110A CHAMP Filter; 2017 Subaru Crosstrek CVT OC#2 ?? mi-SOA/Idemitsu 0w20 + SOA Filter
Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: tenderloin] #4781061
06/08/18 09:12 AM
06/08/18 09:12 AM
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 4,795
Taiwan
Ducked Offline
Ducked  Offline
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 4,795
Taiwan
So if I want to maximise my bald tyre wet weather performance, I should drive a light truck, rather than a car.

Good news in the US, I'd have thought.

Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: tenderloin] #4781082
06/08/18 09:36 AM
06/08/18 09:36 AM
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 637
Mount Dora FL, Penfield NY, R...
ctrcbob Offline
ctrcbob  Offline
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 637
Mount Dora FL, Penfield NY, R...
I go by the wear bars. 2/32nds. Been that way for years. With the price of quality tires today, I'll continue at 2/32.


Bob CTRC USN Ret.
Mount Dora FL,
Penfield NY
Roswell NM

2018 Sonata 2.0T Limited
2015 Sonata Sport 2.0T Limited
Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: Astro14] #4781111
06/08/18 10:10 AM
06/08/18 10:10 AM
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 305
Valencia, CA
Richie Offline
Richie  Offline
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 305
Valencia, CA
I do the same.

Originally Posted By: Astro14
I replace them at 4/32 most of the time, as that's the depth at which wet performance begins to significantly degrade.

Legal minimum and safe aren't the same thing, most of the time...

Re: AAA:Replace worn tires at 4/32nds inch tread depth [Re: Richie] #4781176
06/08/18 11:02 AM
06/08/18 11:02 AM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 3,886
Connecticut
69GTX Offline
69GTX  Offline
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 3,886
Connecticut
With AAA's concern over tread depth, I'm surprised they didn't also mention age and/or UV cracking. Most people can see a tire wearing. Most don't really key on cracking or age until the tire is really worn. Recommendations on retiring a tire based on age are all over the map too. Then you have the issue of good tread, no cracking, yet the tire is 6-10 yrs old...or older. What then?


----------------

2001 Lincoln Cont 4.6L DOHC/ 39K mi / QS HM 5w30 / FUG XG2
1999 Camaro SS M6 /19K /Mobil 1 0w40 /Fram UG /GM MTL-ATF
1969 Ply GTX/RRs
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