Your vehicle's tires withstand the greatest amount of wear through normal driving, as they are the only part of your vehicle that are in direct contact with the road. It should be no surprise then that tires can become extremely worn and damaged over time due to friction and abrasion with the road's surface. An overly worn tire could burst at any moment, greatly increasing the risk of you experiencing an accident. Thankfully, there are a few things that you can keep an eye on to help determine when it's time to take your car in to have the tires replaced.
If you notice that your car is vibrating quite a bit while you are driving, it may be time to purchase and install a replacement set. However, it's a good idea to head to a mechanic first, as sometimes these vibrations can be caused by poor tire alignment or damage to the struts or axles instead. Either way, any sort of shaking or vibrating is a bad sign, and you shouldn't let this issue go unaddressed.
Take a look at your tires to determine where they are being worn down. If they are being worn on the edges more than they are in the middle, your tires are underinflated. The opposite, when your tires are wearing more on the middle than the edges, points to overinflation. However, wear on a single side points to an issue with your alignment or tire mounts themselves. Either way, all types of uneven wear greatly reduce the lifespan of your vehicle's tires and mean that you have to get your tires replaced as soon as you can. Beyond uneven wear, you should also take a look at the tread itself. All modern tires have a bar that runs perpendicular to the tread of the tire very low within the tread itself. If you can see this bar, and if it is even or near-even with the actual tread of your tires, the tread has worn down significantly and is very fragile.
Check the sidewalls of your tires for any signs of cracking or denting, which is a clear indication that the structural integrity of your tire is failing. If left unchecked, damaged sidewalls can quickly result in a complete blowout, but even if it doesn't get that bad, any form of structural damage on the sides of your tires will allow air to slowly (or quickly, depending on severity) leak out, which can leave you stranded on the side of the road with very little notice.
For more information, contact local professionals like Action Al's Tire Company.