Taking care of your tyres is an essential part of motoring maintenance, let alone a legal part. There are several elements that the legislation covers.
You should check your tyres on a regular basis to make sure they have no defects. You should check there are no cuts, tears or bulges and that nothing is in the tyre like nails or screws.
The two front tyres should have the same tread type and the two rear tyres should have the same tread type. So if you fit winter tyres you must do so on both sides of the axle, tyre size must also be the same on both sides.
You should check your tyre pressures on a weekly basis. Your vehicle handbook will tell you what each tyre pressure should be; this could be different depending on how heavy the load is in your car. If your tyres are not at the correct pressure your braking and steering ability could be affected, so it’s really important to check them regularly.
Tyre tread depth should be checked regularly, legally the depth of the tread on your tyres should be a minimum of 1.6mm. Having a low tyre tread will increase your vehicle’s stopping distance significantly.
In the UK it is not a legal requirement to carry a spare tyre, but it is advisable. If you do have one remember to carry out these safety checks on that one too, although legally if it is stowed away then it doesn’t need to be up to legal standards – it just makes sense to keep it that way.