Three Downsides To Mixing Old Tires With New Ones

Posted on: 23 January 2018

If you have a flat tire or your tires have worn unevenly, you may find yourself with a tire or two that you can't use and a couple of tires that may still have some life left in them. When you are in this situation, you have to decide whether to replace just the one tire you need or to replace all four tires at once. There are many benefits to replacing all four tires at once, even if a couple of the tires still have a bit of life left in them. Learning the downsides to mixing old tires with new ones may help you make the decision that is best for your car. Here are three disadvantages to mixing old tires with new ones. 

Doesn't Maintain the Handling Balance

The number one disadvantage to mixing old tires with new ones is that it doesn't allow your car to maintain the handling balance properly. The tread on used tires has already slightly decreased. This means that their size and speed is just a tiny bit different than that of new tires that have not had any wear on them. This causes the car to balance just a bit unevenly, which can affect how it steers. If you must mix tires, it is recommended that you replace either both the front tires or both the back tires to minimize the handling balance differential. If you only replace one tire or tires on one side, you may notice this significantly during turns or your car may pull in that direction while driving. 

Decreased Traction

Another downside to mixing old tires with new ones is that you have decreased traction when you mix tires. New tires have the full amount of traction on them, but tires that have been used have a decreased amount of traction on them. The newer tires are able to grip the road, while your older tires may not be able to keep up and grip as well due to their wear. When all your tires wear evenly, all of your tires uniformly grip the road helping to increase traction. But when you mix old with new, you may experience decreased traction. 

Causes Tires to Wear Unevenly

The last disadvantage to mixing old tires with new ones is that it can cause all of your tires to wear unevenly. This means that your new tires may have a shorter lifespan than they would if you had replaced them all to begin with. While it may cost more up front, replacing all of your tires at once can save you money in the long run. 

If you are in need of new tires, new tire dealers can help you find the best tires for your car and your budget. Talk to a new tire dealer today to learn more about your tire options or to have new tires installed.