When it comes to determining the age of a tire, it is easy to identify when a tire was manufactured by reading its Tire Identification Number (often referred to as the tire’s serial number). Unlike vehicle identification numbers (VINs) and the serial numbers used on many other consumer goods (which identify one specific item), Tire Identification Numbers are really batch codes that identify the week and year the tire was produced.
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) requires that Tire Identification Numbers be 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.
|In the example above: |
DOT U2LL LMLR 5107
|DOT U2LL LMLR 5107||Manufactured during the 51st week of the year|
|DOT U2LL LMLR 5107||Manufactured during 2007|
So before you drive away from that tire shop, stop and look. You might be surprised to know that bad tires are installed more than you would think.