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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys and gals

I am in need of some advice ….Next year my 14 “ tires will be 10 years old and they have great tread left on them and I can’t find any visible cracks on the side walls. I can find a few very small cracks in the tread. I know the size of these tires is becoming very hard to find in Canada, should I be searching for new tires now because the tires are 10 years old and they say after 10 years you should replace them?? Who are “they” anyway?? Thanks in advance for your help.
 

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Who said 10 years? 5 years is when they get unsafe potentially. The problem is they may look good externally but then give way and throw the tread into your bodywork. Buy now, bfg radial ta in oem size are fine, but not great, at least you can go white letter out though. The question you have to ask is, has anyone ever wished their tires weren't so new?
 

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Jaker, my wifes' 2015 Traverse with 42k miles on it, the tires were UV damaged to the point I very recently dropped $900-$1000 replacing them...

It had 7 yr old tires on it once I looked up the DOT date on the sidewall... I even missed the cracking between the sidewall and tread...

Again all depends on use and exposure to UV, temp etc etc...It was the first time Ive had cracking/UV damage to that extent...
 
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It really depends how the car was stored, how it was maintained and what quality of tire it was in the first place. Two things cause the rubber to degrade. Ultraviolet light and ozone gas. If its stored in a reasonably well-sealed and dark garage, then the ten year old tires may still be perfectly fine. You say they look new, but have they gotten hard? Do they make noise that they didn't ten years ago? Do they still have plenty of grip? I had this discussion with my cousin who works at a Goodyear plant. They recommend 6 years based on the average consumer, typical car that sits outside in the weather 24 hours a day, not a classic car that's kept in a climate-controlled museum. And the last 20 years, they've been adding Santoflex, an anti-oxidant additive that prolongs the life of the rubber. That's the stuff that turns your tires ugly brown and works kind of like a layer of oxide on aluminum. Cleaning that stuff off sadly removes that layer of protection, shortening the life. But basically there's no hard expiration date.

Now, there are extremes. I like to watch Wayne Carini on Chasing Classic Cars and he never replaces original tires. I do cringe tho when he takes a half million dollar car for a test drive on 60 year old tires on that highway in front of his shop. I wouldn't do that. I'd get another set of wheels and tires for driving and only use the originals for display. Whether your 10 year old tires are toast I don't know. But if all you are doing is taking the Supra out one weekend a month for fun and it stays in the garage the rest of the time, they're probably fine. If its been outside in the weather the whole time or you drive it every day, then they could very likely be suspect by now.
 
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I just replaced tires on my Supra recently. 1996 date code!! Tires still had great tread, no cracking, and were reasonably soft still. Always garaged, rarely driven. I opted to replace them, but I really didn't feel unsafe on them. Shortly after, I replaced tires on my FJ that were only three years old with almost full tread still.. Interestingly, they were starting to get some hairline cracks. Parked outside, but rarely ever in direct sunlight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
It really depends how the car was stored, how it was maintained and what quality of tire it was in the first place. Two things cause the rubber to degrade. Ultraviolet light and ozone gas. If its stored in a reasonably well-sealed and dark garage, then the ten year old tires may still be perfectly fine. You say they look new, but have they gotten hard? Do they make noise that they didn't ten years ago? Do they still have plenty of grip? I had this discussion with my cousin who works at a Goodyear plant. They recommend 6 years based on the average consumer, typical car that sits outside in the weather 24 hours a day, not a classic car that's kept in a climate-controlled museum. And the last 20 years, they've been adding Santoflex, an anti-oxidant additive that prolongs the life of the rubber. That's the stuff that turns your tires ugly brown and works kind of like a layer of oxide on aluminum. Cleaning that stuff off sadly removes that layer of protection, shortening the life. But basically there's no hard expiration date.

Now, there are extremes. I like to watch Wayne Carini on Chasing Classic Cars and he never replaces original tires. I do cringe tho when he takes a half million dollar car for a test drive on 60 year old tires on that highway in front of his shop. I wouldn't do that. I'd get another set of wheels and tires for driving and only use the originals for display. Whether your 10 year old tires are toast I don't know. But if all you are doing is taking the Supra out one weekend a month for fun and it stays in the garage the rest of the time, they're probably fine. If its been outside in the weather the whole time or you drive it every day, then they could very likely be suspect by now.
Thanks for the advice, i guess my main concern is how available will the 14" tires be in the coming years. I may check my tires yearly and end up driving another five years on them because it sits in a garage and only gets driven on weekends, so in 5 years will there be 14' tires available to buy??
 

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Probably, you can still buy 10, 12 and 13" tires today. Just don't expect great selection. BFG seems to be making the same radial TA's since the 80s without much change. So you better hope BFG stays in business.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I just replaced tires on my Supra recently. 1996 date code!! Tires still had great tread, no cracking, and were reasonably soft still. Always garaged, rarely driven. I opted to replace them, but I really didn't feel unsafe on them. Shortly after, I replaced tires on my FJ that were only three years old with almost full tread still.. Interestingly, they were starting to get some hairline cracks. Parked outside, but rarely ever in direct sunlight.
That's crazy how some tires last and some don't. My wife's CRV had about 49000km on the tires that came off the dealers lot and needed replaced because there was barely any tread left. Even though the warranty said the tread was good until 90,000km, apparently the tires you get from the dealer have little to no tread life warranty on them if you read the fine print. thanks for the info, i think i will ride with the tires i have and hope they still make tires when i need them.
 

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Probably our only saving grace for 14" tires is that so many muscle cars back in the 1960s like Mustangs and Camaros had 14 inch wheels. In the early 60s they were typically 5 inch wide wheels. They got wider toward the late 70s, with many by 69 being 14x7 on the base models, same as the Supra. What's very popular is 215/70r14 in place of the original F70-14 bias plys (higher profile tires were the norm back then). To get a wider contact patch, people will mount 235/60r14s which are pretty close to the F70 diameter (so we'll probably always be able to get those at least). For better handling, i.e. shorter sidewall, some will use 225/60s even tho they are smaller diameter, but being less popular, I think we'll likely see occasional shortages as they may only produce one batch a year.
 
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