What Are Bald Tires? (+ Other Common FAQs)

Bald tires are a common danger to drivers, but many don’t always notice when their tires are in such a state, and may not even know what bald tires actually are.

So, what are bald tires, and what makes them so dangerous? If you’d like to learn more about this topic, continue reading below for safety facts about bald tires!

What Are Bald Tires?

Bald tires form when the traction on your tires has worn down to the point that there aren’t any grooves left. Generally, your tires should be replaced when you have a tire tread depth of under 2/32 of an inch or less. However, many drivers fail to notice when their tires are stripped, which can lead to many accidents.

Keep reading through this article if you’d like more information on why bald tires are dangerous, what can occur if you drive on bald tires, and many more facts and tips on staying safe on the road!

Why Are Bald Tires Bad?

Tread on your tires is what channels the moisture out of the way so your rubber can make direct contact with the ground.

However, when your tread starts to bald on your tires, so will your traction, and the less traction you have on your tires, the more likely an accident can happen.

The other reason why bald tires are bad is that the less traction you have means you won’t have as much rubber to protect your tire from sharp objects that you can hit while driving on the road.

What Can Happen If I Drive On Bald Tires?

What Can Happen If I Drive On Bald Tires?

When driving on bald tires, you run the risk of losing control of your vehicle and not being able to brake as fast as you want or may need to.

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As well, driving on bald tires can result in your tires not catching when you go around a corner, creating a serious possibility of having a blowout in the middle of the road.

How Bald Can My Tire Be?

Your tires will be considered bald when one of your tread grooves doesn’t have at least 2/32 of an inch of depth left, and the more the tire wears, the faster the thread pattern disappears.

Will Bald Tires Explode?

If you wear your tire tread down enough, then there’s a risk that your tires will explode. Once your tires start to have no thread, all that remains is a small bit of rubber before there is virtually no protection left on your tire.

Overall, the less rubber you have on your tires, the more vulnerable your tires will be to all kinds of road hazards, such as sharp objects.

Your tire might not experience a blowout, but if left long enough, the tire will give, and you will be left with a flat and unrepairable tire.

Do Bald Tires Cause Vibrations?

Bald or unevenly worn tires can cause vibrations at low speeds and high speeds, which can also affect your driving characteristics, handling, cornering, and braking.

Therefore, it’s highly recommended that you regularly inspect your tires to ensure there is no stripping and that they are safe for traveling.

Do Bald Tires Reduce The Chance Of Hydroplaning?

Do Bald Tires Reduce The Chance Of Hydroplaning?

Bald tires in fact can highly increase the chances of hydroplaning, which can cause detrimental results.

The tread on your tires is what disperses the road water and debris out of the way so that your tires can stay connected to the ground.

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Therefore, if your tires are bald on any type of wet, slippery surface, it will feel like you’re driving on a sheet of ice.

What Is The Penalty For Having Bald Tires?

The penalty for having bald tires can be pretty steep since you’re not just putting yourself in danger, but you are also endangering your passengers and anyone else who is in the way when your vehicle loses control.

Bald tires can result in a warning, a fix-it ticket, or even a hefty fine and points on your driving record for each tire that is bald, depending on the hazard that your tires have created.

Why Is Only One Tire Bald?

If only one tire on your vehicle is bald, there could be a couple of reasons for this problem. For example, this could be a case of one tire getting more power than the other tire.

Other reasons could be if you don’t have a positraction and you like to do burnouts, or you could have a bad front-end alignment.

In most cases, keeping up with proper tire rotation will take care of this problem. However, if you have a front-end alignment problem, then you will need to have that fixed.

How Do You Drive In The Rain With Bald Tires?

How Do You Drive In The Rain With Bald Tires?

Driving in the rain with bald tires is not recommended by any means. However, in case of an emergency, the best thing to do in the rain with bald tires is to drive about 35 mph or slower.

By driving at such a slow speed, you will have to take side roads and take extra precautions.

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If you’re going slower, you will have more time to react to things like standing water, sudden traffic slowdowns, and other traffic hazards, which will reduce the risk of getting into a road accident.

Why Are My Tires Going Bald So Fast?

Tires wear out the most from four different situations: improper inflation of a tire, not rotating the tires as recommended, a bad front-end alignment, and suspension parts that need to be updated.

All tires will wear down eventually, but the proper maintenance of a tire will help you make your tires last a lot longer.

As well, you always can adjust your driving habits to a less aggressive mode to better ensure the longevity of your tires as well as their functionality.

To know more about tires, you can also see our posts on what is hydroplaning, how long do off-road tires last, and what are highway tires.


Bald tires are tires that have faced severe damage, resulting in the loss of a safe level of tire tread.

By driving on bald tires, you are posing a high risk to your safety, as driving on bald tires increases the chance of hydroplaning, unintentional swerving and a variety of other accidents.

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