Tyre buying guide – what to check

Tyre buying guide – what to check
Buying new car tyres can be complicated. However, as the only contact point between the car and the road, they are arguably the most important component on a car.

So to cut through the confusion, here's everything you should consider when buying tyres for your car.

Buying your car tyres

Before you can choose a new car tyre, you’ll need the exact measurements for your car’s tyres. This information is printed on the sidewall of a tyre.

All car tyre size information is standardised, so it is the same for all tyres. 

An example is a tyre carrying the size lettering: 205/55 R16 91W.

205: the tyre’s width, in mm

55: the tyre’s side profile, as a percentage of the width (a smaller number here indicates a ‘low profile’ tyre)

R16: the diameter of wheel the tyre will fit, in inches

91: the tyre’s load index – the load capacity of the tyre (91 = 615kg)

W: the speed rating of the tyre – so you can match the ability of the tyre to the top speed of the car (W = 168mph)

After buying your tyres

After you have invested in the right tyres it is just as important that you ensure they are well maintained and kept in the correct state.

Regularly checking the state of your tyres isn't just crucial for your safety but is also essential to make sure your tyres are in the correct legally-required state.

Watch this quick video to learn how to check your tyres, including the tread depth.

In addition to road-legal checks it is also important to carry out regular tyre pressure checks, especially before a long journey.

MOT due?

Find a trusted local garage with the RAC stamp of approval.