Tires; Wheels; Rims

19VAC30-70-130. Tires; wheels; rims.
Inspect for and reject if:

  • 1. Any tire is marked specifically for use other than on the highway, such as “For Farm
    Use Only,” or “For Off-Highway Use Only,” or “Mobile Home Use Only.”
  • 2. A radial tire is mismatched on the same axle with a bias ply tire or a bias belted tire.
  • 3. Bias ply or bias belted tires are used on the rear axle when radial ply tires are used on
    the front axle.
    EXCEPTION: On a two-axle vehicle equipped with truck tires with 20-inch rim diameter
    and larger, bias or radial tires may be used on either axle if the vehicle has dual rear
    wheels or is equipped with wide-base single tires.
  • 4. A vehicle has installed on any axle a space saver emergency spare tire that is
    intended for temporary use.
  • 5. Any motor vehicle, trailer or semitrailer, except the dual wheels installed on motor
    vehicles having seats for more than seven passengers (i) operated wholly within a
    municipality or (ii) operated by urban and suburban bus lines, which are defined as bus
    lines operating over regularly scheduled routes and the majority of whose passengers
    use the buses for traveling a distance not exceeding 40 miles, measured one way, on
    the same day between their place of abode and their place of work, shopping areas, or
    schools, is equipped with a tire that has a tread depth measuring less than 2/32 of an
    inch when measured as follows:
    NOTE: The exemptions provided in (i) and (ii) of this paragraph do not apply to buses
    owned or operated by any public school district, private school or contract operator of
    buses.
    NOTE: Measure in two adjacent tread grooves where tread is thinnest. Refer to Figure 1.
    If either of the grooves measure 2/32 of an inch or more, no further measurements are
    necessary and tread depth is satisfactory. Do not take measurements from the tread
    wear indicators.

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19VAC30-70 – Motor Vehicle Safety Inspection Rules And Regulations

  • 6. If both adjacent grooves measure less than 2/32 of an inch, the tire tread depth must
    be measured again at two additional equally spaced intervals around the circumference
    of the tire in a like manner as the first measurement. Refer to Figure 1. If the tread depth
    is less than 2/32 of an inch in two adjacent tread grooves at each of the equally spaced
    intervals, the tire must be rejected.

MEASURE WHERE THE TREAD IS
THINNEST IN TWO ADJACENT
TREAD GROOVES

Page 51 picture
FIGURE 1
IF THE DEPTH IS LESS THAN 2/32-
INCH IN BOTH GROOVES,
MEASURE AT TWO ADDITIONAL
EQUALLY SPACED INTERVALS

  • 7. A tire equipped with tread wear indicators if found to have such indicators in contact
    with the pavement in any two adjacent grooves at three equally spaced intervals around
    the circumference of the tire. Refer to Figure 2.

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Revised August 1, 2012

19VAC30-70 – Motor Vehicle Safety Inspection Rules And Regulations

Page 52 Picture

FIGURE 2
REJECT IF THE TREAD WEAR
INDICATORS ARE IN CONTACT WITH
THE PAVEMENT IN ANY TWO
ADJACENT GROOVES AT THREE
EQUALLY SPACED LOCATIONS

  • 8. Any tire has a cut or puncture into the fabric. This does not include a plug or patch
    that may be used as a manner of repair.
    NOTE: Plugs/patches shall be in the tread area only. Plugs/patches are not permitted in
    the sidewall of the tire.
  • 9. Any tire is worn so that the fabric or steel cord is visible.
  • 10. Any tire has knots or bulges in its sidewalls or if there is evidence of a broken belt
    under the tread, or if the tread is separating from the fabric. Any cracks in the sidewall
    where separation in the rubber is detected or the fabric is exposed, not to include fine
    hairline cracks.
  • 11. Any tire that has been recut or regrooved except commercial tires so designed and
    constructed to provide for acceptable and safe recutting and regrooving. (Regrooved
    tires must be identified on each sidewall as a regrooved tire.)
  • 12. Any bolts, nuts or lugs are loose, missing or damaged.
  • 13. Wheels are installed on the vehicle in a reversed position, except the wheels on
    vehicles that are reversed to perform part of a dual wheel combination.
  • 14. Directional tires and/or wheels designed and manufactured to travel in one direction
    of rotation are not properly installed.
  • 15. Rims or wheels are bent, cracked or damaged so as to affect safe operation of the
    vehicle.
    NOTE: Refer to subdivision 1 of 19VAC30-70-180 (Clearance lamps and reflectors) for
    tires that exceed more than four inches from the body.

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Revised August 1, 2012