Carmakers, tyre makers, and rubber manufacturers have differing opinions on how long a tyre is roadworthy.

Some automakers believe that regardless of tread life, tyres should be replaced six years after their production date. On the other hand, some tyre manufacturers give tyres up to 10 years, on the condition that they are annually inspected after the fifth year.

Perhaps, the best advice is that of some rubber manufacturers, who say that given the variety of factors that can dramatically reduce car tyre life, it is impossible to arrive at a precise expiry date.

Here are the key factors that contribute to tyre-ageing:

Heat: Research shows that warmer climates cause tyres to age more quickly. Environmental conditions like coastal climates and exposure to sunlight can accelerate the ageing process.

Storage: This applies to tyres that are lying unused in a garage or shop. The ageing of tyres that have not been mounted (such as those sitting in a tyre shop or your garage) is much slower than one that is being used. Nevertheless, they do age.

Spares: Even if a tyre has never been used, once it is inflated and mounted on a wheel, it is considered to be "in service" as it continues to age with time.

Conditions of use: How tyres are treated also affect their lifespan. Underinflation causes tyres to wear our earlier. Curb bumping or scraping, puncture repairs, infrequent or daily usage, and the drive time each day are other factors contributing to how quickly or slowly a tyre wears out.

How to increase tyre life & the lifespan of your tyres

Proper maintenance is key to ensure a long tyre life.

  1. Maintain proper air pressure in tyres
  2. Rotate and align tyres regularly
  3. Get routine inspections
  4. Park in a garage or a shaded area, or use tyre covers to delay cracks
  5. Drive your vehicle regularly to work the tyres’ anti-ageing properties
  6. Sparingly use tyre cleaners and abrasives that can strip a tyre’s anti-oxidants and ozone protection.
  7. Avoid bumping curbs or grazing them when parking.
  8. Avoid excessive acceleration, hard braking and aggressive cornering while driving
  9. Stay within the tyre’s weight limit
  10. Don’t buy used tyres as it’s difficult to tell how well they were maintained or the conditions in which they were driven
  11. Make sure of the manufacturing date of the tyre – unused does not mean new, or that its not past its warranty period.

Good quality tyres have longer life spans

A good set of tyres will provide you with great quality features such as grip, superior traction and braking performance, which can lead to an long car tyre life. More importantly, regardless of your driving style, they are likely to last far longer than budget tyres which could need replacing twice as often, without the driving and safety features your ride deserves.