Frequently Asked Questions
- What does the term, “discontinued line” mean?
- Am I allowed to drive on tyres that have a higher speed rating?
- Am I allowed to fit different tyres to those stated in my vehicle registration documents?
- Can I drive with a mixed set of tyres?
- Can I get a tyre approval certificate from you?
- Does it matter what type of tyre I fit on the rim?
- How do I know what colour the writing is on the tyre sidewall just from the product description?
- How does automatic tyre pressure monitoring work?
- What are directional tyres?
- What do I get if I order “Top Quality” products?
- What do the letters actually mean when it comes to speed rating symbols (e.g. Q and T)?
- What does FR mean?
- What does M+S mean?
- What does ML mean?
- What does the TÜV GS stamp mean?
- What does the “E” marking mean?
- What does “in progress” mean?
- What does “load index” actually mean and what for example, do the numbers 85 or 86 stand for?
- What does “Star Performer” mean?
- What should you watch out for when putting new tyres on vehicles fitted with an ABS (anti lock braking system) or ASR (anti slip regulator)?
- What tyre brands and sizes do you offer?
- What tyres am I allowed to drive on?
- When do I need vehicle type approval certification?
- Where will I find tyre reviews and tyre test information?
- Are all the tyres you sell new?
- How can I recognise low-noise tyres?
- How long do tyres last?
- How old are the remould tyres that you sell?
- How should tyres be stored?
- Tyre tread depth – when should I replace my tyres?
- What causes a tyre to burst?
- What information can you give regarding tyre manufacturer / tyre plant location?
- Where can I find out more information about tyre mileage?
- Are there certain maximum speeds for winter tyres?
- Can snow chains be fitted to any tyre?
- When and why should I fit winter tyres?
What does the term, “discontinued line” mean?
The term “discontinued line” written after the tyre size means that this model or tread pattern will no longer be produced after the current season ends. Any tyres remaining are now being sold off by the manufacturer.
Am I allowed to drive on tyres that have a higher speed rating?
Yes, you are permitted to drive on tyres that have a higher speed rating.
Am I allowed to fit different tyres to those stated in my vehicle registration documents?
You should only fit tyres that are authorised for use on your vehicle and listed in your vehicle’s registration documents. Here you will find detailed information on tyre size as well as the recommended load and speed indexes for your vehicle.
Can I drive with a mixed set of tyres?
This is permitted as long the same type of tyre is fitted to the two opposite wheels on the same axle. Nevertheless, we would warn against mixing tyre sets as this significantly lowers tyre performance and road holding on wet or icy roads.
Can I get a tyre approval certificate from you?
You need to get an approval certificate from the tyre manufacturer containing all the necessary technical information for any tyre or rim sizes that you want to buy which are not listed in your car manufacturer’s handbook. Anything different, such as size, must be checked first and given the okay by an expert. This, however is not necessary if the new tyres comply with the vehicle / EC type approval documents.
Does it matter what type of tyre I fit on the rim?
You should always seek specialist advice from either the rim or vehicle manufacturer or look in your vehicle’s registration documents to find out what tyres and type are approved for your vehicle.
How do I know what colour the writing is on the tyre sidewall just from the product description?
In our Internet shops, after you have entered the tyre size you require, you will often be presented with further information about the sidewall design in the form of letters: e.g. WLT (raised white letters), OWL (outline white letters) and BSW or BLK (black sidewall). This will give you some idea of how the sidewall design looks.
How does automatic tyre pressure monitoring work?
An automatic tyre pressure monitoring valve has a special sensor which warns you when the tyre pressure falls. The valves can be bought in a set or individually (for approx. 30 GBP per valve). When a sensor needs to be renewed, it is advisable to have it fitted and calibrated correctly by a garage. Remember that automatic tyre pressure monitoring does not work with a standard tyre valve.
What are directional tyres?
Modern tyres are being increasingly designed as directional. This means that they are designed to roll in one direction only and hence the indivudual properties of the tyre can be adjusted and customised to this direction. This increases tyre performance (reduces road noise and improves wet grip) as well as offering better directional stability and traction in snowy or icy conditions.
What do I get if I order “Top Quality” products?
“Top Quality” is not a brand name in itself, but an indiciation of the product you are ordering. If you choose this option, you’re being offered tyres from a known manufacturer but at significantly lower prices due to high stock in the warehouse at a particular time.
What do the letters actually mean when it comes to speed rating symbols (e.g. Q and T)?
These letters relate to the top speed that the tyre can be driven to. Each letter represents a different speed category. For example, T means you can drive the vehicle at speeds of up to 118 mph. You can find some useful information on speed ratings here. Winter tyres generally have a lower speed rating than “normal use” tyres. The speed rating is important and therefore a sticker marked with the permitted maximum speed for these tyres should be placed in a visible position in the car interior. You should consult your vehicle handbook to check which speed rating is applicable to your vehicle.
What does FR mean?
This code means that the tyre has a raised rubber bead running along the outside edge of the rim that offers damage protection.
What does M+S mean?
In Europe, the M+S designation stands for Mud and Snow i.e. winter tyres. The tread pattern and rubber compound have been specially designed for wintery conditions. Whereas the elasticity of summer tyres starts to seriously diminish under 7°C, thus worsening road contact, winter tyres consist of a special rubber compound with high levels of silicon or natural rubber that perform well under cold conditions. Especially on wet or icy roads, M+S tyres hold the road extremely well and out-perform summer tyres when it comes to braking, steering and accelerating.
What does ML mean?
The ML code means that the tyre has sidewall flange protection to protect both the rim and tyre from kerb damage.
What does the TÜV GS stamp mean?
The German Association for Technical Inspection has an additional “GS” stamp of approval that it gives to motoring products that they find are especially safe and reliable.
What does the “E” marking mean?
For a number of years now, various components of vehicles, such as tyres, sold within the EU must comply with tougher regulations. In order to be approved for the road, tyres must pass certain standards of quality. The “E” or “e” marking on the sidewall signifies that the tyre meets these new, higher standards.
What does “in progress” mean?
This means that this tyre is in the planning stage at the moment. It’s therefore not possible to give a delivery date since production has not yet started on this model.
What does “load index” actually mean and what for example, do the numbers 85 or 86 stand for?
The tyre load index is an international code that tells you the maximum load that an individual tyre can bear. When fitting new tyres, the load index should always be the same or have a higher rating. Mandatory is that the tyre’s load multiplied by two must cover the gross single axle load of your vehicle. The load index consists of a list of numerical codes each of which represents the maximum load (in kg) that the tyre can carry. For example, 85 = 515 kg and 86 = 530 kg. You’ll find a load index table here.
What does “Star Performer” mean?
Star Performer is our own tyre brand. You can find out more information on www.starperformer.de. At the moment, we unfortunately have no tyre test information for these tyres as our private customers have not yet sent in their feedback or ratings and motoring organisations, such as the AA, don't test independently produced tyres. Nevertheless, as with all the other brands we sell, you have the same rights and claims within the warranty period.
What should you watch out for when putting new tyres on vehicles fitted with an ABS (anti lock braking system) or ASR (anti slip regulator)?
It’s important to to keep to the same OE (original equipment) tyre size and rolling circumference when fitting new tyres on vehicles fitted with ABS or ASR systems, otherwise this could lead to system failure. You should always check with your garage, the tyre manufacturer and/or your insurance company to ensure that any different tyre dimension has been approved for fitting to your vehicle.
What tyre brands and sizes do you offer?
On our website, www.eiretyres.com, you will find over 10,000 different tyre models from over 60 different tyre brands. With the help of our easy-to-use tyre search engine you can find exactly the right type of tyre for your car.
What tyres am I allowed to drive on?
All the information you require about the correct tyre type and tyre size (dimenstions) for your vehicle is contained in the vehicle manufacturer’s handbook and registration documents.
When do I need vehicle type approval certification?
If you fit tyres of a different size to what is recommended by the manufacturer, then you need to be in possession of an approval certificate which you have to have with you at all times to be able to show it if required.
Where will I find tyre reviews and tyre test information?
You’ll find all the test result information you need here.
Are all the tyres you sell new?
We exclusively offer new tyres fresh off the production line. Stocked goods older than 2 years are categorised as "DOT" goods and marked with the year of production. By referring to the DOT number at the tyre wall you can identify the calendar week as well as the year of production. Please note that correct storage can enhance the specific properties of the material, as non-immediate exposure to street traffic will allow the rubber mixture to harden over time. According to guidelines by the BRV (German national association for the tyre and vulcaniser trade) tyres are rated as ‘brand-new’ if stored correctly for up to 3 years and as ‘new’ if stored for up to 5 years.
How can I recognise low-noise tyres?
If the inner and outer sides of the tyre consist of single tread blocks with an asymmetric rather than directional tread pattern and the tread grooves start on the outside but do not reach the middle, then these are low-noise tyres. Because of this special tread pattern and the tyre's material (a soft, rubber compound), both rolling resistance and therefore road noise is reduced, which also means a reduction in fuel consumption.
How long do tyres last?
In principal, a tyre’s lifespan is around ten years, however a 'new' tyre is designed to last between one to five years if it’s properly stored when not in use. Both physical and chemical reasons cause tyres to age and this can also happen to tyres that are rarely or never even driven on. Compounds containing anti-oxidising chemicals are used to slow down the natural aging process of rubber. In this way, a tyre that has been correctly stored for long periods should still meet the specifications of, and perform like, a new tyre. However, what is also important is tyre mileage. With an average of around 27,000 miles per year, summer tyres should be replaced at three and a half years and winter tyres after a maximum of seven years (assuming that the tyres have only been used each winter).
How old are the remould tyres that you sell?
The age of the original tyre is no longer visible after it has been remoulded. For the tyre dealer vulcaniser, the only way to determine the tyre’s life span is to use the date the tyre was remoulded. Just as with new tyres, 10 years after this date is the maximum life of the tyre. A point to note: the same product liability rights and warranty rules apply to remoulded tyres as is the case for new tyres and the period begins from the date of manufacture or the date the goods pass over into the hands of the consumer.
How should tyres be stored?
Tyres without rims should stand upright and those with rims should be laid flat, one on top of the other. The tyres should be stored in a cool, dry and dark place. Make sure that they cannot come into contact with grease, petrol or oil.
Tyre tread depth – when should I replace my tyres?
Even with a tread depth of 4 mm, road holding distinctly deteriorates, especially in wet conditions. The tyres can lose contact with the road, thus leading to steering and braking difficulties. Therefore don’t wait until the tread depth has reached the legal limit of 1.6 mm before replacing your tyres. Summer tyres should be changed when the tread depth reaches 2 to 2.5 mm and winter tyres at 4 mm. Tread depth can best be measured at the lowest point in the principal grooves. In measuring the degree of wear in the tread depth, any bridge-like protrusions or reinforcements in the tread base can be ignored. You will often find the abbreviation “TWI” (sometimes other letters are used) or tread wear indicator branded into the tyre sidewall. If you follow the arrow you’ll find a small rubber moulding 1.6 mm above the base of the tread groove. When the tread beside this point has worn down to this level, you can see that the tyre has reached the wear limit and should be replaced. Remember: in the UK by law, cars must have a tread depth of at least 1.6 mm across the central three-quarters of the breadth of the tread and around the entire circumference of the tyre. However, don’t let it reach this level. It has already been shown that even below 3 mm, especially in the wet, road adhesion is seriously reduced!
What causes a tyre to burst?
There are a variety of reasons for why tyres can burst, the main causes being:
A) Driving with low tyre pressure or carrying too heavy a load: If this continues for long periods it can lead to excessive flexing of the tyre sidewall which in itself can result in overheating and premature tyre wear. The tyres can eventually no longer cope and suddenly the tread just disintegrates and / or the tyre bursts.
B) Driving over obstructions or up against a kerb or through a pothole: The external impact can result in immediate, visible tyre damage such as bulges or cracks in the sidewall or it can cause internal damage: both, as in A) can result in the tread surface disintegrating and / or the tyre bursting. The damage however, may only weaken the tyre at this stage and if the car continues to be driven under strain (at high speeds and with a heavy load) the problem simply worsens and the already weakened tyre bursts at a later date. To sum up then, a tyre bursts when, through one of the above causes mentioned, the basic tyre structure itself is destroyed and the tyre simply collapses.
What information can you give regarding tyre manufacturer / tyre plant location?
We acquire our tyres directly from UK manufacturers. However the tyres themselves are quite often manufactured in other countries for cost reasons. We therefore cannot guarantee that the tyres you purchase from us will have been made in the UK. Nevertheless, all tyres sold within the European Community have to comply with tough ECE / EU regulations and, accordingly, have to carry an “E” mark (sometimes written as “e”) on the sidewall to prove this.
Where can I find out more information about tyre mileage?
We are unable to provide any more general information about tyre mileage as it depends on several factors such as the weight of the vehicle, individual road characteristics and how the tyres are driven on the vehicle.
Are there certain maximum speeds for winter tyres?
The maximum speed allowed for winter tyres depending on tyre type and speed index are as follows, 99 mph (speed index Q), 118 mph (T), 130 mph (H), 149 mph (V) and over 150 mph (ZR). If your vehicle is designed to travel at faster speeds than those listed, you are required to have a sticker placed in the car interior that shows the maximum speed allowed.
Can snow chains be fitted to any tyre?
In essence, snow chains can be fitted to any tyre. However, you should check first that the chains that you buy are suitable for the bodywork, rim and tyre size of your vehicle. This is especially true for chrome rims / wheels.
When and why should I fit winter tyres?
It is recommended to buy winter tyres in October when the weather beginds to get colder. The elasticity of summer tyres begins to diminish severely at temperatures below 7°C, thus reducing road contact and therefore lengthening braking time and distance. Winter tyres, on the other hand, consist of a special rubber compound with high levels of silicon or natural rubber that hold their elasticity under cold conditions. Especially on wet or icy roads, winter tyres provide much better adhesion due to their deeper tread which contain thousands of fine slits (sipes) and they will always out-perform summer tyres when it comes to braking, steering and accelerating. Furthermore the consequences of driving with summer tyres in wintery conditions should not be underestimated. If an accident occurs where you are at fault, there may be insurance issues that have to be resolved by you not having the correct tyres fitted.