Tyre damage

Mark Ellson

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Hi all, does anybody know of any reasons my 2011 c220 cdi is taking chunks or rubber out of the side wall of the 18” front tyres? It had some when I bought it a few weeks ago but thought that was the previous owner coming too close to kerbs, but still taking 5 to 10pence sized chunks of tubber. Checked the pressures are correct and trying to avoid the many potholes but still more appear.
Photo showing damage, any ideas?
Many thanks
Mark
 

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drmw

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I can't I afraid, but would say that the outer edge of the tyre seems iffy at last so maybe time to change anyway
 

umblecumbuz

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Are they getting snagged on the return lip of the bodywork?
Do you have a broken spring?
Looks very odd.
What make of tyre are they?
 
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Mark Ellson

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Are they getting snagged on the return lip of the bodywork?
Do you have a broken spring?
Looks very odd.
What make of tyre are they?
They are uniroyals, both brand new for its mot last year apparently. Happening on both sides though. They do have a ridge in the rubber all the way round that sticks out slightly. Didn’t know if that was the problem
 

John Laidlaw

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I think there is a clue away from the chunk out , there’s 2 more ready to rip out I see and there is also crazing near the tread...them ain’t very new tyres IMO, even though fitted a year ago. The chunks look like either delamination (although not 100% on that, cant see clearly) or they’ve been run almost flat at some point
 

malcolm210

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Might be a tyre construction problem the area at the top of the sidewall near the tread looks like it’s suffering with rubber degradation which would explain the deterioration on the sidewall. I’ve seen that before on a set of Michelins but not nearly as bad. I’d take them back to the outlet where you bought them for an opinion
 

00slk

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Under inflated tyres perhaps, the top edge where the tread meets the side wall would indicate that, but as JL says don't look in good condition for recently new tyres. I've had tyres fare like this after track or street racing ;)
 

peterwhayward

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That tyre looks very degraded even within the dips that have come out. Could it be that the seller had just put it on and that it had been knocking around for a very long time before.
 

Wighty

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There is a date on the tyre wall , it is 4 numbers long , something like 2315 which means the 23 week of 2015 . What date is the tyre ?
 

hannay

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Clearly there are serious issues with the one pictured, plus presumably with the other too if it is as you say.

I have a very hard time believing the statement you were given that they were new last year. If they were, then they were either seriously faulty when supplied and should have been returned/replaced by the previous owner when these conditions became apparent in their ownership, or they have effectively been wrecked at some point since by brutal driving.

The other possibility is that the tyres were indeed new to-the-car last year, but not new tyres but part-worns.

Stretching things a little further, there's an outside possibility that they were *new* but had been on the rack 10-12 years unsold .. there was a report last year - that I can't now find quickly - arising from a check undertaken by I think the AA, which threw up the breakdown of materials in a percentage of old-stock tyres of such ages when eventually sold.

The report concluded that materials-degredation can be present after some number of years hanging around, and that affected tyres would not only not have a normal use-life but further would either present with or would later display damage/deterioration such as blisters, cracking, pops, delamination, eccentric/localised wear, and a deal more.

The report concluded that existing sidewall data should also include a clearer/better date of manufacture, and that a time-limit should be established after which tyres should be withdrawn and returned for recycling.

I doubt the third of these is actually very likely in your case as the tyre I see in your photo is junk and has been for some time already.

If you bought the car just a few weeks ago like this it was effectively an MoT failure at that time for this one tyre alone. Had you been stopped for a routine safety check while driving it home it would have been classed as a dangerous tyre and you would have been required to attend to it. If the other side is the same then either you would have needed to be carrying two spares in order to be able to resume your journey, or you'd have had to call a tyre firm out and pay for two new tyres, fitting and callout.

So then ...

First things first, make the car safe! Doesn't matter what the rights and wrongs are right now, stay safe and don't risk what could be a serious accident.

I wouldn't drive it any further than the nearest tyre place, and certainly wouldn't do any speed for any distance .. lose just one to a blowout and you are potentially an accident victim ... add-in 70mph on a motorway with a couple of lorries around and both steered-wheels affected, and ... well, don't! Just don't!!

Afterward ...

The tyres would have been in pretty much this condition when the car was sold to you, as just a few weeks would have added negligible further wear unless you have somehow racked up 3/4/5K miles yourself since you had it.

In any event however if the visible tread wear on the photo is indicative of the rest of the tyre, looks like you were sold a car with (some) tyres that needed changing right away ... a fair-minded seller would have fitted new tyres beforehand, or would have dropped the asking to compensate for unavoidable immediate further expense by you just to stay/be legal.

Was it a private sale or from a car dealer? If private, strictly speaking you bought the car as-is and are responsible for anything discovered afterward ... unless it went on your credit card, in which case you could involve the issuer in a recovery challenge/claim.

If from a car dealer then you could at least involve Trading Standards about the dangerous condition when sold ... might work, might not.

Either way however, if you feel a conversation with the seller is appropriate you should just go back and let them know how you feel ... just set out the facts for them, and your need to see a fair response. They might be fair-minded after all and come to some arrangement. If not however, then if the conversation were mine they would be wearing the useless tyres when I left.

Depending on where that conversation finishes however, decide then if/how you want to chase things any further.

Bottom line, two new tyres isn't a big price for staying safe - live now so you can argue later if needed, don't wait for the other side to stump up for replacements. Also a useful lesson for next time?

Not to add further concerns, however if that's the state of the last driver's tyres, maybe not much attention was shown to the car in all the sensible/necessary other areas either. I'd get it looked over for my own peace of mind, certainly the stay-safe stuff like brakes and steering, then the awkward/costly hidden-wear stuff that will bring a surprise at some point.

A good Indie will know all of this and will happily do a nose-to-tail for you without ripping you off, though whatever they charge for that couple of hours will be something you should be happy to have spent for peace of mind as you presumably didn't have it looked-over before purchasing. Plus any findings could also be useful if you decide to challenge the seller.

If you don't know a good Indie, I'm sure that if you mention your location many here will be happy to make recommendations for you.

But remember, you should fit those new tyres quickly, please stay safe.

Good luck.
 
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Droverunner

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Similar to others above... Seen a lot of tyres in my time... those either look much older than a year or have been run too soft and too fast through road defects... change them now and if a private purchase take it on the chin or if a dealer see what they say.
 
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Flyinspanner

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They look old....

Maybe damaged by a very poor fitter? ....weird as no corresponding damage on the rim itself. Maybe they were second hand tyres fitted for mot & sale, so may have been hanging around for ages (and chewed up on previous rims?)
 

LostKiwi

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They look almost like pinch damage where the tyre has been forced against the rim by a pothole.
 

Droverunner

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>>>look almost like pinch damage where the tyre has been forced against the rim by a pothole.

Very much my thought... and it is not uncommon with very low profiles to see this tyre damage without rim damage if they were hit pretty well straight on.
 

AJD

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They look old....

Maybe damaged by a very poor fitter? ....weird as no corresponding damage on the rim itself. Maybe they were second hand tyres fitted for mot & sale, so may have been hanging around for ages (and chewed up on previous rims?)
That was my immediate thought, no corresponding damage to the rim. They just weren't new tyres. I wouldn't touch part worn tyres even if they were given to, no way :eek:
 

Wighty

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That was my immediate thought, no corresponding damage to the rim. They just weren't new tyres. I wouldn't touch part worn tyres even if they were given to, no way :eek:
Every time you buy a second hand car you buy part worn tyres with no knowledge of their history or repairs .
 
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Mark Ellson

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I think you may be right and they could be older, I was just going by what the dealer said to me.
I was going to get some new ones fitted ASAP but it was such an odd problem that I thought I ought to find out the problem in case it happened to the new ones.
My first thought was a pothole pinch problem that caused it. I will speak to the tyre fitters and let you know their opinion. Thanks for all your help.
 

AJD

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Every time you buy a second hand car you buy part worn tyres with no knowledge of their history or repairs .
You do, yes, there ain't much you can do about that other than having the dealer or whatever fit a new set of tyres at purchase. The condition of the used car and the fact that it would have had a recent MOT should give you some clue as to their condition. We are however talking about tyres from write offs, MOT failures, scrap yards and so forth as replacements for worn out/damaged tyres as a cost cutting measure. Tyres are as far as I am concerned the most important part of a car along with brakes.

Under The Motor Vehicle Tyres (Safety) Regulations 1994 (reg.7.) part of the Consumer Protection Act, it is an offence for anyone to sell part worn tyres that do not meet the following principal requirements:

  1. The structural integrity must not be compromised. It should be free of large cuts, any bulges or lumps both internally and externally. No plies or cords should be exposed.
  2. Tyres must have passed an inflation test prior to sale.
  3. The original grooves must still be clearly visible in their entirety and must be to a depth of at least 2mm across the full breadth of the tread, around its entire circumference.
  4. Part worn tyres which have not been re-treaded must clearly show the relevant ‘E’ mark alongside which ‘PART-WORN’ must be permanently and legibly applied in letters at least 4mm high. These words cannot be hot branded or cut into the tyre.
  5. Part-worn tyres that have been re-treaded must have one of the following:
  • BS AU 144b, 144c, 144d, or 144e markings on the side wall (if first supplied as a re-tread on or before 31 December 2003 an ECE approval mark (if first supplied as a re-tread on or after 1 January 2004)
  • a permanent mark to identify the original model and manufacturer, the word ‘RETREAD’ moulded onto or into its sidewall (in upper case letters at least 4mm high) and further markings in accordance with ECE rules. You may need to seek further advice as to which rules apply
  • The indication ‘PART WORN’ must also appear next to the BS or ECE approval mark, or next to the word ‘RETREAD’
  • For tyres marked BS AU 144e, a speed category symbol and load capacity marking should be present.
  • A tyre has to comply with all these requirements whether or not it is fitted to a rim.
Personally I would not want that doubt in my mind that the tyres I had just purchased did not conform to the regulations. Allegedly there is quite a high percentage of part worn tyres sold by unscrupulous dealers that don't conform. I am not prepared to take that risk.
 
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Mark Ellson

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Thanks for that. Any recommendation on replacement tyres? Nice balance of price and wet weather performance?
 

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