Finding Tire Dates
By Joseph Parish
Every now and then you may have to check the date on your tires whether it be for warranty purposes or just for your own peace of mind. This article will explain to you just how to check these dates.
There are code numbers which appear on tires that provide the particular month as well as the year in which the tire was manufactured. Keep in mind this is the manufactured date and not the installed date.
Before the year 2000 there were three numbers which appeared on the tire such as 158. These three numbers would indicate the 15th week of the year 1998. After the year 2000 the system was changed to a four number code such as 2302. This code indicated the 23rd week of the year 2002.
You can generally find these numbers imprinted in an oval which is preceded by the letters “DOT” meaning the Department of Transportation. You will find these code numbers only on one side of the tire. If you do not see it on your tire then it is likely that the tire was installed with the opposite side facing out. Chances are great that upon examining four different tires that you will view an average of two dates. The dates may not be the sane on all four tires as the shop may have purchased them at different times. You can compare the thread patterns to ensure your suspicions.
If you see a series of numbers on the tires and they do not follow the “DOT” letters then those numbers that you see are not the dates. As an example, the number 9997 would not be a valid date number since there are not 99 weeks in a year.
Any tires that you may have installed on your vehicle with only a three digit date are now old enough that you should replace them for your own safety even though they may still have plenty of good tread still left on them.
Copyright @ 2010 Joseph Parish