Is it safe to purchase second-hand tires from a local mechanic?


Quick Answer

Buying second hand-tires from a local mechanic may not be a safe option because certain hidden factors may affect the lifespan of the tire. It is difficult to know the tire's history, and factors such as high temperatures, humidity, harsh weather and potholes on the road may make a tire wear out. Even if the tire appears new, it may have a diminished lifespan, making it an unsafe purchase.

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Is it safe to purchase second-hand tires from a local mechanic?
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Full Answer

The rubber compounds in tires break down due to exposure to humidity, salt air, sunlight and heat. Furthermore, a tire that has hit potholes or curbs, endured harsh weather conditions, or had various punctures and repairs is unsafe for use. Some of this wear and tear may be evident, but other issues and types of damage are difficult to determine from a visual inspection.

Used car tires may have uneven wear and different patterns that may make the ride less smooth. Buyers may not thoroughly inspect the used tire for scalloping and bubbles, especially on the outside or inside grooves. The tire should have sufficient tread for safe driving on the road. Used tires pass inspection with a tread of at least 2/32. However, it is better to have at least 6/32 tread to use the tire safely, especially on wet roads.

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