Tyre Age & Warranty
Tyre manufacturers mark the sidewall of their tyres with the date of manufacture. You will typically find an oval with 4 digits indicating when the tyre was manufactured. The first two digits indicate the week in which it was manufactured the next two the year of manufacture. For example, a tyre manufactured in the 5th week of 2019 would read 0519.
In the below image the tyre is marked 0907 indicating production in week 9 of 2007.
Tyres do not have an expiry date. In the past South African tyre manufacturers warranted their product against manufacturing defect for a period of up to 5 years from date of manufacture. As a guide, the manufacturers production date plus 5 years could be considered to be a reasonable "best before" date.
Many factors can influence the lifespan of a tyre including storage, frequency of use, maintenance, application, climate, all of which can contribute to premature removal or failure of your tyres. An obvious indicator that your tyres may need replacing due to age and are at risk of failure is cracking or crazing on the sidewall and within the tread area, often experienced on trailer and caravan tyres.
Your safety is a priority and the condition of your tyres can negatively impact on your wellbeing.
All manufacturers are required to warrant their tyres for 6 months from date of purchase, in line with the CPA. There are however a few brands which offer you more
Dunlop - provided within 8 years of the manufacturing date they offer a warranty of 5 years or up to the legal remaining tread depth
Michelin and BFGoodrich - provided within 5 years of the manufacturing date they offer up to 3 years or up to the legal remaining tread depth
Cooper - 6 years from manufacturing date or up to the legal remaining tread depth
Manufacturers terms and conditions are applicable on all warranties and you need to check what the specifics of each brands warranty are.
Tyre warranties are a competitive factor and show the manufacturers confidence in their product. Tyres do not expire when their warranty period is over. Imagine being forced to replace your car battery, or your car, just because the warranty expired.
Most manufacturers experience very low warranty claim rates (hundredth's of a percent). Modern tyres are manufactured in high tech environments with laser precision and stringent quality control measures in place. There is always a possibility that your tyre may fail as a result of a manufacturing defect but the likelyhood of this is low. It is more likely that your tyre will fail as a result of operational conditions, poor maintenance or abuse.
In the instance of a tyre failure take advantage of our obligation free Tyre Assistant service, submit photo's of your tyre to us for evaluation and we will provide you with an opinion as to the reason for failure. Alternatively you can take the tyre to your local dealer or the manufacturers local office for inspection. Ultimately any claim for tyre failure will have to be assessed by the product manufacturer or representative.
In the event of a tyre failure and deflation, it is important that you stop the vehicle as soon as is safely possible. It is extremely unsafe to operate a vehicle with an underinflated tyre and driving on an underinflated tyre will cause further damage, making determining the cause of failure much more difficult as the tyre construction degrades.