Part worn tyres are cheaper. But at what cost?

When it comes to tyres, we know everything there is to know; like how crucial they are to your driving safety.

Also called used or second-hand, part-worn tyres come from a variety of sources. Some are shipped in from countries that have a higher legal tread depth than the UK. Others come from scrapped vehicles, or even cars that have been in an accident. The problem is it’s impossible to be fully aware of a part-worn tyres history, and therefore know if there’s more wrong with them than simply being ‘worn’.

Here at HiQ we put safety first. If there was even a small chance a tyre might not perform as it should, we could never recommend or sell it to you, no matter how cheap it was. Second hand savings simply aren’t worth the cost of these hidden hazards.

Find a safe alternative with our tyre search.

You don't always know where they're from.

But when you do it might come as a surprise

We don't even know where this one is from

Shipped from Norway

Removed from a car accident

Taken from a scrapyard in Germany

Part worn tyres are false economy and unsafe.

With the slow recovery of the UK's economy, more motorists are opting to choose second hand/part-worn tyres as a cheap alternative, however this may be a false economy.

Tyre A: Mid range tyre £56.96 fitted.

A tyre with 6.4mm of useable tread. That's 8mm (new tyre tread) minus the legal tread limit of 1.6mm

Mid range tyre

Tyre B: Second hand/part-worn tyre £15 fitted.

A tyre with 1.4mm of useable tread. That's 3mm (average part-worn tread) minus the legal tread limit of 1.6mm

Second hand tyre

The diagram demonstrates that 'Tyre A' has far more useable tread. To get the equivalent from a part-worn you'd need almost 5 tyres to get the same tread as a new one, costing an additional £71 per tyre. As you can see, it makes sense to fit new tyres straight away.

At 50mph in wet conditions worn tyres add two car lengths to your stopping distance*

Chart source: ROSPA (the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents)

As tyre tread wears down, the braking distance increases over time. Optimum grip is achieved with full tread from a brand new tyre. With part-worn tyres, they're often fitted with 3mm depth therefore stopping distances are increased and your overall safety could be put a risk.

Nothing beats the safety, performance and peace of mind of a new tyre

There's more to a part worn tyre than meets the untrained eye:

  • Potential damage that you can't see

    There could be damage you can't see by eye. Tyres damaged by impact can have unstable stress points leading to blowouts(1).
  • More trips to fit more tyres

    Worn tyres don't last as long. So in the long run they could turn out more expensive.
  • Insurance invalidation

    If there's anything wrong with your tyres which leads to an accident, this can invalidate your insurance(2).
  • Bumps that lead to blowouts

    Bumps can appear inside or outside after an impact on a tyre. If these go unnoticed they can cause a potentially dangerous blowout.
  • A murkey past

    You won't always know its history. Was it from an accident? A family car? A cast-off from another country? Is it worth it?

*Tests carried out by the Motor Industry Research Association (MIRA) involving four different vehicles travelling on wet roads on four different tread depths. At 50mph on 3mm tread depth stopping distance = 31.7 metres. On 1.6mm tread depth stopping distance was increased to 39.5 metres. Source: 1. NTDA/ 2.