part worn tyres
It’s extremely hard to resist a bargain, and with cheaper, second-hand belongings that look just as good as the latest and newest version, it can be even harder to turn them down. But when it comes to our car’s tyres, should we really be choosing second-hand as an option…?

With a set of four brand new tyres costing anything up to £1,000, it’s no surprise that people are turning to part-worn tyres, as a cheaper alternative. However, an investigation with Auto Express and TyreSafe into the sale and state of these part-worn tyres revealed some devastatingly shocking results.

The test

TyreSafe bought a sample of 50 totally random, part-worn tyres from across the Midlands, sourced from both online and offline dealers. In short, it was brought to light that seemingly trustworthy establishments are actually selling illegal and life-threateningly dangerous tyres to desperate motorists, who cannot afford the prices of brand new tyres. Why are they getting away with it, you might be thinking. Because to someone who is not an expert in the field, the tyres look seemingly fine, but to those who know what to look for, they were anything but.

Close inspection

Tyre Checks
Tyre expert Ted Foreman inspected each and every tyre and it was brought to light that:

– Only one tyre out of the sample 50, was actually found to be legal.
– Only one tyre had the legal requirement, ‘part-worn’ stamp symbol on the sidewall, which they all should have, by law.
– Some of them had punctures that had been very poorly patched up on the inside.
– Some had steel wire running through the middle.

The list goes on, but on a more positive note (surprisingly!) and in their defence, the tyres did all have the the legal tread depth of 1.6mm


All of these tyres were found to be breaching The Motor Vehicle Tyres (Safety) Regulations Act 1994, which is actually part of the Consumer Protection Act. This Act outlines how the exact legal requirements such as the amount of tread depth, overall condition and acceptable repairs that tyres should adhere to. It also highlights that any repairs need to be labelled in order for them to be traced back to the garage who carried them out, which were all missing from the sample. Therefore, motorists buying these tyres are oblivious to their history.

Winter driving

At this time of year, your tyres are more important to you than ever, and if you’re looking to buy new tyres, then it is highly recommended that you go for winter tyres, or at least brand new, so you can be exactly sure on what you are receiving.

Winter tyres are tailored specifically for winter driving conditions that we all have to put up with in – unfortunately. They have deeper grooves that help in snowy conditions by collecting the loose snow, reducing chances of skidding and giving you better traction overall to the road. On the whole, they are recommended for driving in temperatures of anything below 7°C.

You wouldn’t go outside in December in shorts and flip flops, would you? Then you shouldn’t be driving with the same tyres you do all year-round either.

Universal Tyres

For a range of different tyres to suit your driving needs, including winter tyres, please contact the team at Universal Tyres. We offer affordable rates and our expert mechanics can carry out excellent tyre fitting services. Just get in touch today!