Can I Replace Just One Tire On My Car?

Albert Howard

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Can I Replace Just One Tire On My Car?

Regardless of how good your day is going, finding out that you suddenly have a flat tire will make anyone unhappy. It can be so inconvenient and can disturb your busy schedule. Normally, the quick response to this type of scenario is to do a quick swap with your extra tire or pay for a new tire. But this shouldn’t be your go-to solution; there are a number of underlying issues such as bad wheel alignment that can lead to consistent flat tires or tire blowout. Therefore it’s best to have an expert check your car before replacing your tires. You can visit Conklin Ford Newton here to schedule an appointment for your car service.

Have you suffered a flat tire, and you are wondering if you can replace just one tire? Well, you can. However, it is not advisable. It would be best if you considered several factors before deciding to replace one, two, or all four tires.

Factors To Consider Before Replacing One Of Your Car Tires

Here are some of these factors:

Tread Of Other Tires

If one of your tires is damaged and the other three are still considerably new with intact treads, it might be possible to get by replacing the damaged one without significantly affecting the safety and performance of your car. 

As a rule of thumb, you shouldn’t allow the tread depth of your tires to go below 4/32 of an inch. So, if you have a damaged tire and the other three tires have a thread depth that’s less than 4/32 of an inch, it’s best to replace all 4 tires. 

Types of tire

Another important consideration before replacing a damaged tire is the type you are replacing the tire with. For instance, if all four of your tires are all-season tires, and one gets damaged, you shouldn’t replace the damaged one with a spare winter tire. This is because even a slight change in tread design can affect the way the car accelerates, brakes, and turns corners. 

Type of Car

It is always recommended to change all four tires at once if your car is a four-wheel-drive (4×4) vehicle or an all-wheel drive (AWD). This is due to the fact that all four tires spin independently of each other, and the speed at which they spin can be affected by a difference in the tread depth or style of the tire. If one of the tires has a different thread depth, it could cause damage to the drive train, which can, in turn, damage the car’s indirect TPMS system.

What Happens When You Change Only One Of Your Car Tires

It Could Cause Damage To Your Suspension System

The suspension system and driveshaft depend on the alignment between each tire to maintain proper performance. When you replace one tire, it’ll cause a notable difference in the height of your vehicle. This, in turn, stresses other parts of the vehicle and results in more severe car damage. But if you change at least 2 of your tires (the 2 tires along the same axle), the height of the car will be balanced, and it’ll help you avoid spending more money on fixing the damages that could result from replacing only one of your tires.

Affect your Vehicle’s Stability

The tread design and its direction aren’t there solely to make your vehicle look breathtaking; it helps to keep your car firmly balanced on the road regardless of the situation. The tread helps you drive safely during snow, rain, and on various terrains; it prevents your car from skidding out. When you change one damaged tire, it’ll disturb the grip capacity of the other tires. This can be dangerous when you’re driving in the rain and snow and when making turns. 

Disturb The Vehicle’s Computer Setting

This might sound a bit surprising, but your car has a computer system that helps your car to perform properly. Your automobile has an internal computer that notifies it when the engine needs to be checked, when the doors are open when the tires need to be and more. If you’re driving a new model, the computer system might even take into account your fuel efficiency. This computer gathers data from many sources, including your tires, among others. You run the danger of introducing unstable data into the system when you have one new tire and the other three tires are old. It could cause you to get error codes from your car computer system. Your car can begin to give false information that you have flat tires, problems with your anti-lock brake system, and many more. Therefore, it’s best to replace 2 or 4 of your car tires to prevent confusing your car computer system.

How To Know When It’s Time To Replace Two Of Your Car Tires

Penny Test

A Penny test is an effective way to check if your car tires have worn out. If you’re driving a new car model, you might not need to perform this test because most new vehicles have inbuilt indicator bars that show when your tread depth is down to 2/32 or an inch. However, to perform the penny test, put the upside-down penny with Lincoln’s head between the treads of your tires. Your wheels are still in good condition if part of the head is covered. But if you see the entire head, you should start shopping for new tires.

Weather Specific Tires

Most car tires can be categorized into three; all-season, winter, and summer tires. If you reside in a region that experiences snow often, you need to have winter tires or all-season tires to make driving in winter smooth and easy. If you don’t have these tires, then it’s time to consider buying snow tires or all-season tires in preparation for the coming snow downpour.

In conclusion, it is best to change at least two of your car tires when one tire is damaged. This will take out the guesswork and give you peace of mind knowing that you are not at risk.