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How Long Can You Drive On A Doughnut?

Doughnuts, also known as space-saver tires, are designed to be small and temporary, intended to get you back on the road after a flat tire emergency. But exactly how long can you drive on a doughnut until it’s safe to switch out the temporary tire with your original?

After all, no one wants their safety compromised because they ignored signs from their vehicle that point toward badly needed tire replacement. Read on to understand why driving on a doughnut for too long can be dangerous and how long is considered an acceptable timeframe for this kind of emergency measure!


How Far Can You Drive on a Doughnut?

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How-Long-Can-You-Drive-On-A-Doughnut (2)

According to the owner’s manual, you should aim to drive no more than 70 miles and no faster than 50 miles per hour before replacing the tire. It’s not just a matter of inconvenience; space-savers have little to no tread, making them vulnerable to road hazards and projectiles. Due to its smaller size, the tire also has to spin faster to keep up with the rest of the car.

So if you find yourself in a situation where you absolutely must go farther than 50 miles on a spare tire, be sure to avoid driving on it for longer than 70 miles. Remember, a spare tire isn’t meant to be a permanent solution, but rather a temporary fix until you can properly replace it.


How Long Can You Drive On A Run-Flat Tire

If you drive a BMW or MINI, chances are, you already have these tires installed. Run-flat tires are stronger than traditional tires and can withstand various road hazards, including punctures.

They can give you an additional 50 miles of driving time even after being punctured, which means you can make it home or to the nearest tire shop without having to change a tire on the side of the road. However, it’s worth noting that run-flat tires are more expensive to replace than traditional tires.


What happens if you drive over 70 miles on a donut?

Running the donut for more than 70 miles can cause serious wear and tear on various car mechanisms such as the wheel bearings, brakes, and transmission gears. Plus, the lightweight design of the spare increases the likelihood of a tire blowout or damage. Driving on a space-saver for too long can cause permanent damage to your car and ultimately put you in danger.


Pro Tips For Safely Driving On A Donut

To keep yourself and other drivers safe on the road, there are a few important rules to follow.

  • First, don’t exceed 50 mph. Donuts lack the stability of regular tires and high speeds can lead to dangerous situations.
  • Second, make sure the tire is fully inflated to a safe level of 60 psi.
  • Third, be extra careful when braking or cornering to avoid slipping or sliding.
  • Finally, stay in control of the car’s traction and stability systems.


What Is The Difference Between A Spare Tire And A Donut?

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How-Long-Can-You-Drive-On-A-Doughnut (1)

A spare tire, also known as a full-size spare, is larger and has more tread than a donut tire, meaning it can be driven for a longer period of time.

On the other hand, donut tires are only meant to be driven for short distances until you can get a new full-sized tire. As you hit the road with a donut tire, you’ll immediately notice the differences in performance and handling. which can be long enough until you can get to a repair shop where they can fix or inspect your flat tire.


FAQs about How long can you drive on a doughnut

Can you use a donut tire more than once?

The answer is yes. Ensure that you inspect the tread wear indicators and maintain proper inflation of the spare tire.

How can you tell if a donut tire is bad?

To determine if a donut tire is in poor condition, inspect it for signs of cracking along the sidewalls and between the tread blocks when you examine the spare tire. If there are only faint cracks that are not detectable by the edge of a penny, the donut tire is safe to use temporarily, but it should be replaced after it has been utilized.


How long does it take to replace a donut tire?

According to experts, if you follow the proper steps, you should be able to change a donut tire in 15 to 30 minutes. Of course, if you’re not comfortable doing it on your own, there’s no shame in taking it to a professional.

Is it safe to drive with a donut on the front?

While it’s generally not recommended to drive on a donut for an extended period, there may be situations where it’s your only option. If you do find yourself in a bind and need to drive with a spare tire on the front, make sure to take it slow and steady.

Keep in mind that donut tires have speed and distance limitations, and it’s best to stick to quiet streets and avoid highways if possible.


Is it better to have a donut on the front or back?

Experts suggest using it only on the rear of your car. Why? Well, for starters, most cars are heavier in the front, meaning that using the donut on the back will put less stress on it. Additionally, the majority of your braking force comes from the front of your car, so using the donut on the back won’t have as much of an impact on your ability to stop quickly.


Can you drive on a donut for a week?

Unfortunately, the answer is no. Donuts are only created for temporary use and not exceeding 70 miles. Trying to use a donut tire for more extended periods may cause harm, not only to your car but also to you and other drivers on the road.


Can you drive 55 on a donut tire?

While you may be able to drive up to 70 miles on a donut spare, it’s not recommended to go over 50 mph. Not only can driving at high speeds cause the donut tire to wear down quickly, but it can also potentially damage other parts of your car, such as the transmission.



In conclusion, you must be careful when driving on a doughnut. Driving on it for more than 70 miles or faster than 50 mph can be dangerous and damaging to your car. Make sure you check the inflation of your spare regularly if you are going on a longer ride, as most rental companies do not change the spare unless requested.

Finally, remember that the difference between a regular spare tire and a donut is in the size- a donut will always be a smaller tire than what originally came with your vehicle. When replacing tires, make sure they are all the same size to provide optimal traction and handling!

Thank you for reading! We hope this article was helpful in answering the question how long can you drive on a doughnut.

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