May 152012
 

How can you tell if the new tires that you are purchasing were really manufactured recently?

To identify when a tire was manufactured read its Tire Identification Number and you can determine the week and year the tire was produced.

The  Tire Identification Numbers are a combination of the letters DOT, followed by ten, eleven or twelve letters and/or numbers that identify the manufacturing location, tire size and manufacturer’s code, along with the week and year the tire was manufactured.

Since 2000, the  last four digits of the Tire Identification Number provide week and year the tire was manufactured with the 2 digits being used to identify the week immediately preceding the 2 digits used to identify the year.

Example of a tire manufactured since 2000 with the current Tire Identification Number format:

In the example above the tire was manufactured during the 51st. week of 2007.

 

Tires produced prior to 2000 were labeled based on the assumption that tires would not be in service for ten years.  So while the The Tire Identification Number  provided the same information as today’s tires, the week and year the tire was produced was contained in the last three digits. The 2 digits used to identify the week a tire was manufactured immediately preceded a single digit used to identify the year.

Example of a tire manufactured before 2000:

In the example above:
DOT EJ8J DFM 408
40 Manufactured during the 40th week of the year
8 Manufactured during the 8th year of the decade

The Tire Identification Number format identifies that the tire was built in the 8th year of a decade, there was no identifier that confirmed which decade.

A word about tire warranties,  most tire manufacturer’s warranties cover their tires for four years from the date of purchase or five years from the week the tires were manufactured.  Let say you purchase new tires that were manufactured exactly two years earlier. They will be covered for four years from the date of purchase  or a total of six years from the date of manufacture as long as you have your receipt. If you lose your receipt, your tires’ warranty coverage will end five years from the week the tire was produced resulting in the tire manufacturer’s warranty coverage ending only three years from the date of purchase in this example.  So hold on to your sales receipt!

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