second hand tyres
Second-hand tyres

Are Second Hand Tyres Worth It

Are you looking for second hand car tyres in Perth, Brisbane, Adelaide, Melbourne, and other cities throughout Australia? You may be under the impression that second hand tyres are the best option for your vehicle due to the low cost. But can you really trust them to be safe and reliable?

Advantages Disadvantages
Are often cheaper than brand new tyres of the same brand and style. Will be more costly in the long run as tyres will have to be replaced much sooner than new ones.
In the event of a puncture, purchasing a second hand tyre at the same life stage as the other tyres on the vehicle to ensure tyres will wear at the same pace. Unaware of previous driving and road conditions. There is no way of telling if the tyre will wear at the same rate as each other due to how it has been treated in the past.
Buying used is considered environmentally friendly, preventing unnecessary waste of a tyre. Each tyre will be disposed of in the same way, no matter how much tread remains.
It is easy to search for second hand tyres online and being able to purchase off private buyers. It is a time consuming process searching for the right used tyre and then having to find an appropriate fitting station. Not only is this time consuming, but costly.


Reasons why tyres need to get replaced

A large range of second hand tyres could possibly be coming from:

  • A written off vehicle

  • A recycling service for wrecked vehicles/ salvage yard

  • An illegal dump


With the additional possibility it was:

  • Sitting for many years in the weather deteriorating

  • Out of shape

  • Exposed to flat spot

  • Retreaded or illegally regrooved

  • Previously damaged and repaired. For example a puncture repair.

  • Could have possibly been recalled

You might be searching for a second hand tyre to match with the others on your vehicle. This could be a great idea, so each are at the same life cycle stage. Although there is no guarantee this tyre will wear at the same rate as the others, you really will not be sure what this tyre has been subjected to in the past.

Purchasing new tyres have additional benefits including:

  • Exposure to the exact same conditions

  • Wearing at the same rate

  • Last longer

  • No safety risks

Can 2nd Hand Tyres Be Inspected?

Part worn tyres can look immaculate inside and out. What could possibly be bad about tyres appearing to be in good condition at such a low price? It is almost impossible to tell it’s true condition without knowing its history. Do you know who used them before you? You will not know if the previous owner correctly maintained it, if incorrect labelling has been stamped to mislead you, and if it’s undergone dodgy repairs. Previous repairs are not always visible. There is no guarantee the one you purchase has not been involved with any road hazards.


Did the previous owner:

  • Regularly check the tyre pressure. Incorrect tyre pressure will cause the tyre to undergo tremendous stress. If the tyre has been overinflated, the centre of the the tyre’s tread will be the only point of contact with with road, causing the tyre to wear significantly at the centre. If the tyre has been underinflated, noticeable wear will be present on the outer edges of tyre tread.

  • Stay up to date with wheel alignments, wheel balancing and rotations. Each one of these factors are a crucial element to ensuring each tyre is sitting on the vehicle correctly, balanced and aligned, to prevent uneven tyre wear. If wheel alignments, balancing and rotations are not regularly checked, it will impact the mileage you will get out of them.

  • Stick to the recommended load limit. Driving over the load limit will cause heat to build up in the tyre, eventually destroying it.

  • Use chemical products that cause deterioration. The wrong cleanser can cause the tyre’s materials to break down and drain onto the tyre’s outer surface. This will cause the tyre to deteriorate quicker, resulting in small cracks and bumps overtime.

The Invisible Damage

Aging tyres are at a higher risk of excessive heat and water damage that is not always visible, even if it has never been used. These risks include the rubber becoming brittle and loose over time. This will cause a series of cracks and splits usually visible on the sidewall. Chemical compounds begin to break down the internal elements after time. This will not be visible until the tyre starts to crack and by this stage it is too late to save. In general, deterioration occurs with age and is at a higher risk of becoming vulnerable to unnecessary punctures and malfunctions. Many vehicle manufacturers suggest replacing tyres between 6-10 years, including unused spares. The Department of Transportation (DOT) code located on the sidewall provides the manufacturing date. Make sure to check the last 4 digits of the the 11-14 digit code. This indicates the week and year it was produced.
A survey conducted by TyreSafe found that 34% of second hand tyres advertised online were found to have potentially life threatening defects. The same survey concluded that out of those advertised, 98% were illegally for sale.


Watch this TyreSafe video to further understand the hidden risks associated with purchasing second hand tyres.

Buying new will save you time and money. You will not have to waste time searching for an appropriate used tyre at Tyroola. New tyres are so much cheaper than they have been in previous years. With brand new car tyres starting from $39 open 7 days a week online, cheap second hand ones are phasing out. All you have to do is type in its size and choose from a list of appropriate tyres. Once you’ve selected your tyres, all you have to do is choose your preferred fitting station. Is $39 still too much? With Tyroola’s Mates Rates you can pick up top quality tyres in stock from the lowest prices, as low as $16 each. Do not waste your time with a second hand tyre. Once you’ve bought one, you will need to find a mechanic to fit it, costing you even more.

What Are Second Hand Tyre Legal Requirements?

In Australia, we have a minimum tread depth requirement. Used tyres are often sold with just the legal minimum requirement. The amount of tread is a crucial element of how it will perform. Tread determines how the car steers and breaks. The lower the tread, the longer the vehicle will take to stop due to the limited grip. This has the potential to be life threatening, especially in wet and slippery weather conditions.

Tyres that have had alterations must say so. For example, if it’s been retreaded it must be labelled with the correct wording to identify such as “RETREAD/REMOULD”, “MAX. SPEED/SPEED LIMITED”. If you have purchased one without the required labelling, it has been sold to you illegally.

Other countries around the world are much more conscious of the risks associated with second hand tyres and are stricter on regulations compared to Australia. In the UK, according to their Trading Standards and Local Government Association, it is essential that any used tyre is labelled with a ‘part worn’ stamp. This label is an indication that tyre has been inspected and is legally permitted to be used on the roads. Any tyre sold without this stamp is illegal. These strict regulations are set in place to ensure the safety of all road users in the UK. In Australia, the consumer of a second hand tyre is left unprotected. It is unknown if the product is of a lesser quality or is potentially life threatening.

According to TyreSafe, the required braking distance in the wet at 80 kilometers is just 29.7 metres on a new tyre with 8mm of tread. Compared to a second hand tyre, with the legal minimum of 1.6mm of tread requires 37.8 metres to come to a complete stop.


The video below shows Toyota’s extensive research into how stopping distance is affected by tyre tread depth. Three different tread measurements were used 10/32 (8mm - new tyre), 4/32 (3mm - recommended time to replace tyres by manufacturers) and 2/32 (1.6mm - the legal minimum requirement) at 96 kph on a road with  0.5mm of rain.

It is not worth spending money for a tyre with the bare minimum roadworth amount of tread. Not when brand new super affordable and reliable tyres are available at Tyroola, keeping your loved ones safe on the road. Instead of thinking of the initial cost, whether new or used, consider the cost per millimeter. A second hand tyre will end up costing you more in the long run.  

According BBC News, in the UK 4.5 million second hand tyres are sold annually. A recent study suggested that more than 80% were sold illegally, with deadly defects. Durham County Council officers discovered that 25 out of the 39 that they checked had complications that could harm safety. Only 1 of the 39 had the correct ‘part worn’ stamp. This article mentioned that there were 908 road incidents in the UK in 2015, with 16 resulting in death, that involved illegal and defective tyres.

Purchasing Off Gumtree

We searched for used Toyota Corolla tyres on Gumtree. According to the search results, a set of two second hand Hankook Kinergy Eco Tyres are $140, keep in mind only 50% tread remains on this tyre for this price.

At Tyroola, this exact tyre is available for $174 in a set of two. For only $17 more per tyre, you can purchase a brand new Hankook Kinergy Eco tyre, giving you double the lifespan of the second hand tyre advertised on Gumtree.

An alternative budget tyre, the Winrun R 330, suitable for this vehicle is available for $94 for a set of two tyres. This alternative budget tyre is $23 cheaper per tyre than the second hand tyre on Gumtree!

  Gumtree Tyroola Tyroola BUDGET
Tyre Type Hankook Kinergy Eco K425 Hankook Kinergy Eco K425 Winrun R330
Price $70 each

$87 each ($43.50 with Mates Rates)

$47 each ($23.40 with Mates Rates)

Tread Amount ~50% 100% 100%


Buying second hand tyres off Gumtree can be risky. This is because anyone has the ability to post an advertisement. The used tyres advertised on these types of websites will not have passed any safety inspection tests. In other countries, it is a legal requirement that all second hand tyres sold must have the appropriate ‘part worn’ labelling, indicating that the tyre has been inspected by a professional.

Do Not Fall For These Tricks

Regrooved Tyres

Second hand tyres can be physically altered, giving buyers the illusion that it is newer than it really is. Regrooving is a well known cheap, nasty and dangerous method of extending a tyre’s life. A little paint and oil and it looks brand new again, but no one knows how used it actually is. Many second hand tyres are subjected to this method before being resold, again, and again. Stripping away the rubber leaves the tyre exposed. This has severe implications on the structural strength. It will be much more prone to punctures, splitting, bulges and blowouts, and at high speeds this can be fatal. Not only is this method dangerous, but can also void your vehicle’s insurance, costing you thousands of dollars. Is it really worth putting your families lives at risk? According to the RMS, it is illegal to fit regrooved tyres to cars, utilities, station wagons, and panel vans.   

Retreaded Tyres For Passenger Vehicles

Retreads are another method used to give the tyre extra tread. Retreaded tyres for passenger vehicles are considered a cheaper alternative to purchasing new ones. With the increasing awareness of tyre pollution, purchasing a used/retreaded tyre seems like a great option. Not only are you doing your part for the environment, but you will be saving a few extra dollars. Although retreads come with many associated safety risks. The tyre’s grip and steering accuracy are not as precise as what a new one will provide. This can be hazardous in harsh weather conditions or if emergency braking is required. Retreaded tyres will wear much quicker. One tyre can be retreaded up to ten times. This is difficult to spot upon inspection, you will not know if the used tyre has been subjected to this method.

Is It Really Worth It In The End?

When it comes to tyres you can not afford to take the risk. Each benefit to purchasing part worns are overcome with a potential risk. A set of wheels are the only point of contact your vehicle has with the surface. Now it’s up to you, is it really worth the risk? Remember part worn = part safe. We can get you brand new cheap tyres for about the same cost of second hand ones. What is your families life worth? Remember, a new tyre will keep you and your family safe. Search for safe and new tyres now online at Tyroola.