3 Reasons Why Illegal Tyres Could be Your Costliest Mistake

Wednesday, 6th May 2020

If you're driving on illegal tyres, then HiQ, the nationwide tyre and autocare specialists, have come up with three hard hitting reasons to take immediate action. HiQ's 1-2-3 campaign aims to eliminate illegal tyre usage across the UK.

For some drivers, highlighting the dangers of damaged or excessively worn tyres is not enough to provoke action. This is why we have come up with a no-nonsense, three-pronged approach to tyre safety in a bid to rid the roads of an unnecessary danger.

  1. One worn or defective tyre could cost you £2,500
  2. Worn tyres add at least two lengths to your stopping distance at 50mph in wet conditions
  3. Each tyre with a tread depth less than 1.6mm could add 3 penalty points to your licence

Marketing manager Geraldine McGovern explained: "We wanted to generate some hard hitting messages that motorists will take note of.

"The prospect of penalty points to your licence, let alone the cost implications and safety element, is particularly strong and a fact that we hope will resonate with a number of drivers”.

"The aim of this campaign is more than just getting people to change illegal tyres. We want it to have far more longevity than that, with messages that will stay with drivers for a long, long time."

According to a TyreSafe up to 10 million vehicles in the UK could be driving on illegal tyres, which further supports HiQ's case that a worrying ignorance exists amongst drivers when it comes to road safety.

What Makes Tyres Illegal?

Simply put, an illegal tyre has a tread depth of less than 1.6mm.

There are three ways you can check your tread depth:

  1. 20p Test – the simplest test is to take a 20p coin and check whether the outer band is visible when inserted into the grooves on your tyre. If you can see the outer band of the coin, your tyres will need to be replaced.
  2. Tread Depth Gauge – you can purchase a tread depth gauge quite cheaply and use it to measure your tyre tread.
  3. Tread Wear Bars – if the TWI bars on your car are smooth with your tyre tread, it’s time to invest in new tyres.

For more details, read Dunlop’s informative guide on checking tyre tread.

What do Illegal Tyres Look Like?

Illegal tyres can take various forms. Visit our Chamber of Horrors page to see examples of illegal tyres.

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