What is the Penny Test for Checking Tire Tread Depth

Tires

- question from 9/9/2020 by Anne, filed under Tires and Understanding Course Material

I am trying to figure out how to know when the tire is too worn down and I need new ones.

Regarding The Penny Test - I don't understand how this works. You place a penny into a tread groove on your tires with Lincoln's head pointed down and if you can see all of Lincoln's head it's time to replace the tire? Shouldn't that say If you CANNOT see all of Lincoln's head...?

TrafficSchool.com Says

Hi Anne, thanks for reaching out.

The explanation we have in our course is accurate. The Penny Test shows the amount of space in-between the outer edge of a penny and Lincoln’s head (which is about 2/32nd of an inch), so when placing a penny into a tread groove on your tire and you can see all of Lincoln's head, then your tread is below 2/32 of an inch and the tire should be replaced. On the other hand, if you CANNOT see all of Lincoln’s head, meaning the tread is covering his head, then you’re good.

I’ve included a pic from the course to help illustrate.

* This question and answer may have been modified to remove any identifying personal information of the person asking the question.
** The information contained within this FAQ is up to date as of 9/9/2020. We always recommend that you get the latest information available by contacting TrafficSchool.com, the DMV, or Court directly.

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