When should I change my tyres?
The tyre is the only point of contact between your machine and the road.
It’s essential to maintain the quality and performance of your tyres. With this in mind, we advise you to observe the safety rules and recommendations on use.
Ignoring these recommendations may have a negative effect on vehicle performance and it may also cause problems of use and faulty operation of the tyre which might compromise the safety of the user and third parties.
Tyres which are checked regularly last longer.
In, practice, you are advised to make a weekly check on:
- the condition of your tyres
- the tread depths
- any damage due to impacts or any abnormal sign of wear
and check your tyre pressures twice a month.
If you are in any doubt, ask the opinion of an expert. He’ll be able to tell you whether your tyres are still fit for use.
Six reasons for changing your tyres
Below you’ll find six reasons for checking whether or not you need to change your tyres.
In certain situations, a tyre can be repaired. The tyre must be inspected very carefully, both inside and out, before any repairs are carried out.
Repairs can only be done by a specialist since the tyre has to be removed to check whether the interior has suffered any damage not visible from the outside.
1. The tyre is punctured
Although they are very strong and capable of withstanding a lot of impacts, tyres may sometimes puncture.
If your tyre punctures, it must be examined by a professional mechanic. He alone can make sure that the interior of the tyre has not suffered any damage meaning that it cannot be repaired.
Here are a few safety tips to follow if you suffer a flat tyre out on the road:
- Your passenger’s safety and your own is THE priority: make sure you stop your bike in a protected area well away from the road
- Turn the engine off
- Switch on your hazard lights
- Put on your high-visibility jacket
- Place your warning triangle at a distance of 100 metres back down the road from your vehicle
And remember: Your safety comes first!
2. The legal wear limit is reached
How do you make a regular check on the wear of your tyres? Simple.
At the top of the sidewalls on MICHELIN tyres, markings in the shape of the Michelin Man indicate the location of the wear indicators. Looking like little bumps, they are located in the bottom of the main grooves
When the depth of rubber remaining gets to the level of this mark, the tyre has reached the legal wear limit of 1 mm.
Michelin strongly recommend you to change your tyres even before this limit is reached.
If you go beyond this wear limit, safety, grip and performance are no longer guaranteed, particularly on wet roads. Besides this, you’re breaking the law.
Whatever the case, even with a more than 1 mm of wear left, your safety depends on adapting your speed and riding style to the external conditions, particularly on wet roads.
3. The tyres show signs of ageing
It’s difficult to predict how long a tyre can be used. It doesn’t depend on their date of manufacture. Tyres which have never been used, or just used occasionally, may show signs of ageing.
Several factors may affect the service life of tyres: climatic conditions, conditions of storage and use, load, speed, inflation pressure, maintenance, riding style, etc.
Each of them may alter the expected service life considerably.
For all these reasons, Michelin recommend that all riders should regularly spend a few minutes on checking their tyres so as to detect any external signs of ageing or wear, such as deformation or crazing on the tread, shoulder or sidewalls, etc.
Consequently, Michelin advise you to get your tyres checked regularly, including the spare wheel, by a professional mechanic. His inspection will confirm whether or not you can continue to use them.
The 5 year test – before it’s too late!
When they’ve been in use for 5 years or more, tyres must be examined annually by a professional mechanic.
If they need to be changed, follow the bike manufacturer’s recommendations concerning the replacement of original equipment. As a precaution, any tyre which has not been replaced after 10 years must be changed, even if its general condition seems good and it has not reached the limit of wear.
4. The tyre is damaged
A pavement, a hole or a blunt object can seriously damage a tyre. Any perforations, cuts or deformations must be examined carefully by a professional mechanic. He alone can tell you whether the tyre can be repaired.
As a general rule, you should be aware that you must never ride on a damaged tyre or one which has been run flat without consulting a professional mechanic.
This is a safety rule because only if the tyre is removed by a professional can it be confirmed that its inner lining has not been damaged.
In what cases can a tyre not be repaired?
- Puncture in the sidewall
- Bead wires visible or distorted
- Tread separation or deformation
- Wear laying the fabric or casing bare on the tread or sidewall
- Damage caused by hydrocarbons or corrosive substances
- Mottling or scuffing on the interior resulting from running on under-inflated tyres
5. The tyre shows abnormal wear
Abnormal tread wear – located at certain points, at the centre or on the shoulders – is often a sign of a mechanical problem (worn shock absorbers, transmission, brackets, etc.) or a balancing fault.
It can also be the consequence of unsuitable inflation pressure.
To prevent any irregular wear, get the balancing of your wheels checked every 6 months.
This operation will extend the service life of your tyres and give you a more comfortable ride.
Additionally, you may feel that tyre wear is exaggerated in comparison with the mileage covered or other bikes ridden in exactly the same way as yours.
In these cases, contact your specialist.
6. The tyres do not suit your vehicle
Select your tyre in accordance with legislation and the type of fitment recommended for the vehicle. For optimum performance, it’s preferable to use front and rear tyres with the same tread pattern.
Tyres of different designs, tread patterns and degrees of wear may affect the vehicle’s road-holding and its stability.
Unless specifically stated by the manufacturer, never fit a radial tyre and a non-radial on the same vehicle.
There are several ways of determining which tyre is best for your vehicle.
In case of doubt, consult our tyre selector or one of our specialists.