Does the Penny Test Work for Your Tires?


There are many different methods that you can use to check the tread on your tires and it will help you to know whether it’s time to replace a tire on your vehicle. If your tread is extremely worn out, it will prevent you from driving a safe vehicle. One of the easiest and most talked about methods of checking your tire tread is to use a penny and a couple of minutes out of your day.

When to Replace Tires

There are certain regulations in countries around the world about when you should be replacing your tires. In the United States, the tread depth is measured based on 32nds of an inch. New tires generally have 10/32” or 11/32”. If you have a SUV or a truck, your winter tires may have deeper treads than other vehicle models. It is advised that tires should be replaced once they have reached the 2/32” range and in fact, most states require drivers (by law) to replace their tires at that depth.

How to Perform the Penny Test

Step 1: You will want to put a penny between the treads on your tire.

Step 2: Turn the penny so you’re able to see Lincoln’s head pointing down into the tread of the tire.

Step 3: Does the top of Lincoln’s head disappear between the tread? If his head is gone, then your tread will still be measured above 2/32”. If you can still see all of his head, then it’s time that you consider replacing your tires.

Double-Checking the Test

It is advised that you focus on several areas of each tire when you’re going through the penny test, otherwise your readings could be inaccurate. It is also important that you check each tire that you have on your vehicle to see which ones are worn out and which ones are still safe to drive on. If there are any areas of any tire that fail the test, you will want to make sure that you replace them otherwise the worn out areas will cause issues in the future.

In the event that your tires aren’t consistent in their wear it could mean that the tires aren’t properly inflated or your tires are misaligned. If you notice that the wear isn’t even, talk to a mechanic or a tire technician to see if there is a problem with your vehicle.


Eurotech Car Care Center is committed to ensuring effective communication and digital accessibility to all users. We are continually improving the user experience for everyone, and apply the relevant accessibility standards to achieve these goals. We welcome your feedback. Please call Eurotech Car Care Center (254) 200-1009 if you have any issues in accessing any area of our website.