mechanic taking tire off of rack of tires

What Tires Do I Get for My Car?

How Do I Know What Tires I Need to Get for My Car?

Our vehicles have several important components. One of these parts are your tires. Your tires need to be regularly maintained to function properly. This includes getting them rotated and balanced, checking and filling the pressure, and getting new ones.

If you have a newer model, you can often find search features that allow you to enter the make, model, and year of your car to get the proper tires for your car. However, it isn’t always that easy to find the proper tires for your car. Below, we have shared how to figure out what tires you need to get for your car.


You should also check out: How often should I check my tire pressure?


Make sure you’re getting the right tires for your vehicle

Before you buy your tires, you need to figure out how many you need to getIf your tires are newer and only one tire was impaired, you can get away with only needing to buy one tire. However, you’ll need to look at the tread wear of all your tires if they’re getting old. This can help decide if you need just a pair or a full set. Now, let’s get into where you can find the correct tire size for your vehicle. You can find this info on the tire sidewall or on the driver’s door placard. The tire size and type are seen on the tire with a mixture of letters and numbers, each with different meanings. An example of this is: P185/60R14 82H. Let’s break down each part:

stack of winter studded tires
  • Tire type: The type of tire is indicated by the “P” to indicate that it’s a passenger tire or “LT” to indicate it’s a light truck tire.
  • Tire width: This is indicated by the number immediately after the “P” or “LT” and before the forward slash. The number you see is the width of the tire in millimeters at the widest point. In our example, the tire is 185 mm.
  • Tire aspect ratio: This number indicates the ratio of the height of the tire to the width of the tire. In our example, we see that the aspect ratio is 60, which means the height is 60% of the width.
  • Tire construction: Almost every tire will have the “R” to indicate that it is radial construction. Other tire constructions include Bias or Diagonal and Solid tires.
  • Rim diameter: The rim number indicates the size of the rim that the tires fit onto. In our example, we have the number 14. This means that the tire is made for a 14-inch rim.
  • Load rating: The final defining part of the tire is the load rating which is indicated by a number and letter pairing. In our example, the load rating is 82H. The number indicates the load rating or the load it can carry its maximum PSI level. The H indicates the speed rating. This is the speed that the tire can maintain safely.

Read more: What is the Difference Between Winter Tires and All-Season Tires?


Find more tips and tricks on the Dan’s Car World blog

If you enjoyed learning how to pick out the correct tire, check out the Dan’s Car World blog for more posts like this one. We’ve covered several topics including changing your cabin air filter, changing your oil, and much more.