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  1. #1
    mrgreenskeeper
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    10 year old tires with 17K miles...replace?

    I have a 2002 530I with 17K miles on it (i know, i should drive it more) that still has the original tires. Michelin suggest replacing tires after 10 years from the date of manufactoring which for me was 4901 (49th week of 2001). Are these dangerous to be driving on? Could the tire being 10 years old also contribute to excessive road noise? Thanks.
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    I think the big concern is the UV from the sun breaking down the rubber. Cracks in the sidewalls are another.
    You'll have to look at their condition and make your own decision.
    I'm sure a tire store will want to sell you new ones.

    My spare tire is about 9 years old and still looks new, never been on the car.
    It will probably be in the trunk for another 9 years.
    I'd use it if I ever needed it.
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  3. #3
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    The answer to your safety question depends on who you ask; the car maker, tire company or various tire mfr associations outside the U.S.: http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tirete...jsp?techid=138. Of all those sources, it appears no one recommends driving on tires more than ten years old. At the very least, you are getting poor grip under all conditions due to the hardening of the rubber. Nois is often a result of the heel-toe tread block wear pattern endemic to E39s and other BMWs, and the complaints on this forum about tire noise seem to have decreased greatly since the days of the OEM Contis and Bstone SO2s. But you need to get new tires one way or the other.
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    Yes. Anything 6+ years can be problematic. Of course there are tons of variables - UV exposure, ozone exposure, temperature cycling and extremes, exact composition of tire etc...etc...etc... There are numerous articles which can be researched online about the "hidden" dangers of "old" tires. I think the angle of most of the stories is that 99% of consumers aren't aware of the date coding on tire sidewalls and are often sold very old stock by disreputable dealers.
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  5. #5
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    10 years on a set of tires. Really. I think you've probably gotten your money's worth out of those. My dad had a set of tires on his old '95 Taurus and one day he said they were making some kind of noise. I checked and the tread (of which there was plenty) had completely separated from the casing on one of the rears. Of course these were only about 12 years old and spent most of their life outside but still...! According to Murphy's Law, your 10-year old tires will fail at the absolute most inconvenient time and place - possibly catastrophically.

    Caveat emptor.
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    Are the tires dry rotted in any way? Do they feel soft and pliable or hard and stiff? Do they rumble and ride harsh? If they have been parked in a garage with minimal or no UV they might be just fine. Only you can make this determination, if they passed muster I would use them and watch them very carefully. RT
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  7. #7
    mrgreenskeeper
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    Thanks everyone for the feedback. It sure looks like I need to get some new tires next spring when i take the car out of storage. One thing I forgot to mention was the car was driven for close to 3K miles with a bad alignment. In June when i had it aligned the guy (BMW dealership) told me and showed me that the last time it was done the numbers were way off. Just so happens it was the same dealership that did the last one too! I spent some time raising up all four corners today to see if there was any side to side and top to bottom play in the wheels. There was none but i did notice that not one tire turned true, each and every one of them had high spots. In addition each tire had random spots on both the inside and outside edges that where worn pretty bad. The wear pattern was in synch, if the inside was worn so was the outside, and if it wasn't worn on the inside the outside was good too. Again, thanks for the replies...off to research the best tires come spring!
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    Rather than going through all of the hassle of researching, and buying, and dismounting, and balancing, and mounting... just sell it to me!!!

    No, not really. Although I'd love to have an e39 with few miles on the clock, I couldn't swing it right now. You must have quite a nice ride for the e39 to be relegated to storage status. I'm jealous.
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    LOL, I think if Mr. Greenskeeper (or any of you fellow e39 comrades) lived over here, every time --and I mean every single time--you stopped and wondered "should I replace whatever", you'd do it in a heartbeat. Why? Careening down the autobahn @ 220 kmph+ sustained, and you'd be surprised how that little "should I replace it" voice in your head becomes a Van Damme in-your-face "get 'er done yesterday" scream
    EuroDavid
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    my spare is 12 years old. Been in trunk since car was made. I would use is only as a spare.
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  11. #11
    JOHNLH
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    old tires with few miles

    Quote Originally Posted by mrgreenskeeper View Post
    I have a 2002 530I with 17K miles on it (i know, i should drive it more) that still has the original tires. Michelin suggest replacing tires after 10 years from the date of manufactoring which for me was 4901 (49th week of 2001). Are these dangerous to be driving on? Could the tire being 10 years old also contribute to excessive road noise? Thanks.
    I face the same dilemma. I have a 2004 Buick LeSabre Limited with 16,000 miles. As I examine the tires they appear to show tiny crack around the sides. For me it is better to error on the side of safety. I faced the same problem with fluids such as transmission and radiator. I decided to go ahead and change them. Was not cheap but nothing last forever. Looking at CR they have a recommended buy on the Firestone at $92 each. I was going to buy a Michelin but for over 40 a tire I will go with the Firestone now that CR has a recommend on it. I know my shocks need replacing as when I hit a speed bump the car rocks back and forth several times and nearly bottoms out. The car should be good for another 9 years. Road salt and heat take their toll over time unless you keep your car sheltered all the time.
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  12. #12
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    I have a '97 528i (practically mint condition) that has been garaged for almost ten years now. I take it out of the garage, a few times a year and run it around the neighborhood just to keep it loose and running. I have a set of Continentials on it that only have about a few hundred miles on them, but have been stored out of UV exposure (in enclosed garage), and stored on the "TireCraddle" tire support pads, all this time. The tires are still "soft rubber feeling" and I see no external damage (cracking, etc.). So I guess I'll keep them on the car until I decide to put new rims and tires on.

    I also have a '90 300Z 2+2 (also mint condition), that has a ten year old set of Dunlop SP Sport's on it, that have a few hundred miles on them as well. Again, the car has been in enclosed storage, and only driven a few times a year to keep it "loose" and running. The Dunlops still look great and are soft to the touch (no cracking, etc.). The Dunlops are also on the car and supported with set of "TireCraddle" tire support pads. Since these tires are also in an enclosed garage, and out of UV damage, I suppose they will hold up fine for a few more years or more.


    The "TireCraddle" tire support pads are a great product to have: (I have two sets now - love 'em)
    http://www.tirecradle.com/TireCradles.html
    Last edited by NJDave; 03-20-2014 at 09:48 PM.
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