The hidden cost of partworn tyres

The hidden cost of part-worn tyres

We take a look at part-worn tyres, the lure of saving money is making part-worn tyres an interesting option for many drivers in the UK. But are they a good deal or a safety hazard? To find out we have reached out to Tyre experts Davanti and research conducted by the charity Tyresafe

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Running a car can be pretty expensive – even taking out the cost of the vehicle, you need to pay for road tax, MOTs, servicing, fuel, insurance and tyres.

Drivers are always looking for savings, but most of the costs of motoring are unavoidable. The one area where a lot of people try to save however is tyres, which has led to the rise of the part-worn industry.

It may be considered by the cost-conscious driver a savvy move – but buying part-worn tyres is a decision which might not be as safe as you think.

The part-worn industry in the UK is thriving but despite strict regulations on what they can sell and how cheap the prices can be, a lack of enforcement has seen some retailers take advantage of consumers. Recent multi-agency research commissioned by driving safety charity TyreSafe, in association with Trading Standards, shows at least 74% of part-worn tyres in the UK failed to meet safety standards.

There were a variety of failings identified in this research from tyres not being correctly marked as part worn to illegal tread, inadequate repairs, objects still in the tyres and structural damage such as sidewall bulges.

There are plenty of statistics that underline the dangers of part-worn tyres. For example, the average braking distance for a new tyre on 8mm of tread when driving at 50mph is just under 26m, while the braking distance of a part-worn tyre doing the same speed with 1.6mm of tread is, on average, almost 38m.

But the biggest single problem with part-worn tyres is safety. Tyres are your single point of contact with the ground when you are driving. They hold you in corners; they stop you when you brake, they are finely engineered to deliver vast amounts of grip through a contact point roughly the size of a postcard.

They are not indestructible. Stored incorrectly, they can deteriorate. Used when damaged, they can fail at speed resulting in fatal accidents. When you buy a part-worn tyre, even if you think the dealer is reputable remember, you don’t know how that tyre has been treated by its previous owner – and neither does the person selling it to you.

Your contact with the road is the size of a postcard. If something goes wrong, are you confident your tyres can cope?

These days part-worn tyres are not the only option for moneywise drivers. Many new brands are only marginally more expensive and offer much greater safety and peace of mind.

Safe driving!

We’d like to thank Davanti for providing the above information. You can visit their site at to find your local dealer.