How poor tyres can affect the value of your car

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When the time comes and you have to sell your car, we all want the most money we can possibly get. The last thing you might think may be deflating your vehicle’s value is your tyres.

Beyond physical condition, poor service history is the single biggest depreciative factor. Simply put, a car with three years or more of service history missing will seriously damage your odds of selling.
Whilst visible bodywork damage will ultimately knock off up to 10% of your car’s value, wheels and tyres, in fact quite the money pit, and are often overlooked by prospective sellers.

But, if you knew how much a poor set of tyres cold deflate the value of your car, you’d think again about looking after them. In all, bad wheels could cost you up to £400 at valuation.

Bald or well-worn tyres, which require replacement, could lead to deductions by as much as £100. Mismatched tyres and kerbed wheels are the next most common cause for reduction, marked by as much as £75 at most dealerships.

What causes tyre damage?

Fortunately, tyre damage can be combated. Potholes, glass and rocks are obviously fairly unavoidable road hazards; however there are three main causes that you can steer clear of.
Under and over inflation

Under or over inflation seriously affects your tyre’s lifespan. Under inflation can cause excessive flexing in the tyre casing, resulting in overheating, an increase in rolling resistance and premature wear and tear. Over inflation reduces a tyre’s grip, which can again cause irregular wear.

Tyres can be inflated using a foot pimp or other tyre inflation device. The correct inflation pressure is set in the vehicle owner’s manual of your car. Note that in higher temperatures, tyre pressure should also be higher. It is also important to measure your spare regularly too.

Driving at speed

Driving at a higher speed than necessary – whilst unsafe – can also result in tyre damage. If contact is made with a road hazard such as glass, rocks or potholes, there is a great chance of damage. At the same time, reaction time is reduced, where contact could have perhaps been avoidable.

Excessive speed can cause greater build up of heat, which in turn wears away at your tyres. Sudden tyre destruction and rapid air loss can result in accidents in extreme cases, where tyres have not been properly maintained for some time.

That’s why it is not only important for maintaining value, but for maintaining road safety, to have your car’s tyres checked regularly and changed by a tyre specialist should there be any noticeable damage.


To make sure your tyres are not overloaded with weight, you should read the load index of your tyres, locating inside the tyre sidewall. Do not exceed the load capacity relative to this index.

Whether you’re helping move your son or daughter to university or a friend moving house, it is important to know that tyres loaded beyond their maximum can build up excessive heat, which may cause sudden tyre destruction.

How can I make sure tyres don’t affect my valuation?

So not only can poor tyres affect your driving safety, they can also damage your car’s valuation. Check your tyre pressure and tread depth at the same time, once a month. Before a long journey, ensure your load index is adhered too, and when driving, control your speed.

By following these tyre tips, you can ensure that when you think ‘now is the time to sell my car’, you’re not just providing peace of mind for the next vehicle owner, but you’re pocketing the most money you can as a reward for looking after them. Win, win!

Author: Wesley Young is a motoring blogger for Trusted Car Buyers, and has published a number of articles on tyre safety on the motoring blog.

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