Boot and tyres check.

Understanding tyre tread depth law.


During the buying process, CarVeto recommends visual inspections of each area of the vehicle. This includes the engine, bodywork, interior, electrical components, tyre checks, boot-well and documentation. You also need to run a history report to ensure the car is genuine and legal to buy.

Our car history check provides in-depth data on the background of a used vehicle. Visit this page to run your own free check. You’ll have the option to purchase our Veto Platinum check for £12.50 that provides all available data on a vehicle from Experian finance, Police markers, DVLA and other automotive sources.

Below is our quick tyre checker and boot-well guide that will help you to make a wise purchase:


Guide to checking the tyres on a used vehicle


Checking the boot well

Checking the boot area correctly can be as important as the engine. Especially paying attention to the spare wheel or puncture repair kit, wheel brace and jack.

  • Begin by opening the boot and feel and smell for any damp or moisture. If you sense any dampness the black, rubber seal around the boot area may be split/broken. Look at the rubber surround for signs of breakage
    It could also mean the vehicle has been deep valeted and not dried correctly to avoid moisture and damp building up
  • Check the underside of the boot mat as this area often holds water and may need drying out


Remove boot mat if possible for the next steps

  • If the vehicle has a spare wheel remove it completely along with all the tools such as jack, wheel brace, spanners etc
  • Look for water inside the boot well (where the spare wheel lives)
  • Examine the spare wheel and tyre. Ensure the tyre is pumped and legal to go on the road
  • If the vehicle is fitted with a “get you home” puncture kit ensure it is operating and ready to use. It is best to test the kit where possible
  • Use the wheel brace and see that it fits the nuts holding the wheels to the vehicle
  • Most modern vehicles are fitted with alloy wheels. Ensure there is a locking wheel nut and it fits correctly


Checking the tyres

Driving with damaged, faulty or illegal tyres can result in a roadside fine and insurance invalidation. Consider that tyres are the only part of a vehicle that is in contact with the road.

Tyres that are fitted to a vehicle must be ‘Fit for Purpose’ and be ‘free from any defects which might damage the road or endanger any person’.

Tyres must be correctly inflated too.

‘Fit for Purpose’ means that a tyre must:

  • Be compatible with the types of tyres fitted to the other wheels
  • Not have any lump, bulge or tear caused by separation or partial failure of the structure
  • Not have a cut or tear and not have any part of the ply or cord exposed

Check tyre walls for:

  • Splits, holes or chunks ripped out of the tyre sides
  • Sizes of the tyres – they must all match i.e. 195/55/R15
  • 1.6mm tyre tread is the legal limit (most tyres have a marker to indicate legal limit)


You might also check out Merityre who offers some great advice on tyre law.

We offer free guides on each step to buying a used vehicle. Read our last post that describes a car engine check and some common things to look out for before you buy.

The team, CarVeto


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