This could be a very short piece: all tyres sold in the UK must adhere to specific standards, so any tyres you buy from a reputable dealer, whether in-person or online, will be roadworthy. But there are some specifications and details to consider if you want to buy the best roadworthy tyres for your car.

All car owners want trouble-free tyres that do not show signs of crack, wear or bulges – and this holds true while travelling on various routes in the UK; it can be Scotland, London or even towards Yorkshire.

Let’s take a look at how one can wisely purchase roadworthy tyres.

Tyre Types

Three categories of tyres are available in the UK: premium, regular, and budget. As their names imply, there is a difference in quality between each of these categories.

Tyre being held by man wearing gloves
Roadworthy tyres are essential on all cars

Premium Tyres

These tyres are made from the highest possible quality of rubber, usually sourced from sustainable supplies, and are crafted using the latest technological advances.
They are usually the product of big brand names with the budget to invest millions into research and development and make adequate products into superb products.

Regular Tyres

Are the brand name ‘value’ options, offering a solid, comfortable ride for a more manageable price for the average household income. They will use some innovations, good quality rubber, again from sustainable sources, and offer a comfortable and reliable ride on most roads.

Budget Tyres

The cheap and cheerful end of the tyre market, offer a basic product, often designed using older technology and rubber of a lower standard. These companies, seldom big brand names, will sometimes need to be more clear on the sources of their rubber, which means that it could come from irreplaceable sources, such as Amazonian rubber. However, as mentioned above, even budget tyres must adhere to the regulations and should work perfectly well on the UK’s roads.

Tyre Usage

If your commute is short, on excellent roads, and you tend not to use your car very much for leisure purposes, then budget tyres are perfectly fine for your needs. If you drive long distances often and face poorly maintained or dirt roads, then you should invest in a more robust tyre.

Having part worn tyres can be dangerous and is a primary reason that they have to be roadworthy here in the UK. If the tread has fallen below the required depth then it will be time to search for some new tyres.

Quite often the front tyres will have worn down quicker than the back tyres so it may not require a full set of new tyres which will save you money. If you can inspect your own tyres then this will also save you money as noticing part worn tyres will give you time to find the perfect ones that suit your wheels.

This is not to say that budget tyres are not roadworthy – more that some roads are not in as good a condition as they should be.

What Does Roadworthy Actually Mean?

Roadworthy tyre being examined
An MOT will determine if your tyres are roadworthy

The annual MOT is all about ensuring that cars on the UK’s roads are ‘roadworthy’, and the definition of roadworthy here is that vehicles should be safe to be on the UK’s roads, able to be controlled and stopped safely when circumstances demand this. For tyres, the definition is similar: tyres should work effectively, stop within the required limits, steer safely, and be firmly and correctly attached to the vehicle.

An excellent way to ensure your tyres are roadworthy is to have a look at the MOT test checklist and make sure that your tyres would always pass these elements: the treads should have a minimum depth of 1.6mm over the central three-quarters of the contact surface, the tyres should be correctly inflated to within the manufacturer’s stated guidelines, and the tyres should be aligned and the wheels balanced.

Any signs of damage – dark spots could indicate punctures; dimples or bulges in the sidewall can indicate a failure of some kind inside the tyre, and missing chunks of rubber are always a sign of concern – should be rectified immediately, most often by replacing the tyres as soon as you can.

Maintaining the relevant tyre pressure will also ensure that you won’t have to keep purchasing new tyres. Inspection is the key to good maintenance and once you know what you are looking for in the tyre tread you can comfortably and safely drive wherever you need to go.

If you are new to driving and this all sounds confusing, the best thing to do is find a mechanic or garage that you trust and consult their experts. If you are in Scotland or a nearby locality, you can buy your new tyres in Dunfermline from Fife Autocentre at competitive prices. They have a duty of care to their customers and will soon have you back on the road, confident that your tyres are roadworthy.