Broken Belt In Tire: Don’t Ignore Its Causes And Symptoms

What causes a broken tire belt and how do you know whether you have a broken tire belt?

This article will go through everything you need to know about a broken tire belt. After your reading, a broken tire belt wouldn’t take you off guard anymore.

So, let’s get to it.

What Is A Broken Belt In A Tire?

To know what a broken tire belt is, you must first know what a tire belt is. It is a rubber-coated layer of fiberglass, rayon, and steel between the plies and the tread. A tire belt offers resistance to wear and tear or punctures. They also allow the tread to remain flat and in contact with the road. 

With that definition out of the way, what is a broken tire belt? A broken tire belt is when your tire tread separates from the inner air compartment. This could cause the vehicle to tilt to its side because its surface is now uneven. Driving on a tire with a damaged tread could be very hazardous. 

What Causes Broken Belt In A Tire?

A broken tire belt can occur due to various reasons of which we will explore. Below is a run-down of possible causes for a broken belt in a tire:

causes of broken belt in tire
4 common causes of broken belt in tire

Defective belts/Manufacturing issues 

As mentioned earlier, these tire belts are steel cords that allow the tire to stay in shape. The layer of rubber, which we call the tread, compromises these steel cords giving it durability. As a result, any defective belt will cause the tire to lose integrity; thus, breaking. Defective belts often occur because not all tire manufacturers make their own belts. How does this affect the belt quality, you ask? It puts the manufacturing of these belts out of the maker’s control, meaning that there is a likelihood that these external contractors may use less quality steel. This will eventually lead to a broken tire belt.

Tread Separation

Because the primary function of the tread is to grip the road firmly in any condition, a tread separation would cause the tires to slip and spin. This leaves your tire bald and makes your vehicle difficult to control. A tread separation would definitely cause your tire belt to break.

Rough Roads And High Speeds

Tires are one of the most vital parts of a vehicle. They allow you to have a steady and smooth ride on the road. However, the tire belts can weaken if you constantly drive on gravel roads or potholes. It means that you should avoid hitting potholes at high speeds as every major hit experienced by your tire degrades it.

Improper Mounting

Improper mounting of tires could be disastrous. To say the worst, the rim assembly of your tire could literally explode if it is improperly mounted. This will, without a doubt, cause your tire belt to break.

Broken Tire Belt Symptoms

While having a broken tire belt is not a good dream come true, knowing its symptoms would go a long way. That way, you won’t be caught off-guard as you would’ve sensed it coming. Below are some common symptoms of a broken tire belt:

There are many symptoms of a broken belt in tire, including steering difficulty, vibration, sidewall cracking and tread issues. This video will show you how to check for â broken belt in tire – Credit: backyardmech

Steering Difficulty 

Your tires aid your ability to steer your vehicle efficiently. The outer tire belts of your tire provide stability and help it steer without too much hassle. This can also mimic the symptoms of a misaligned front-end as your vehicle may tilt while your steering remains straight. The moment your tire belts begin to break, you will notice that steering becomes even more difficult.


Your vehicle tires are usually balanced with the use of metal weights. This ensures that your tires roll without wobbling or vibrating, implying that if the belt in your tire breaks, your vehicle wheels will lose their balance, causing vibrations when in use. However, a broken tire belt does not prevent you from driving, but you will feel it on your steering; Thus, it reduces the comfort level of your car by large.

Sidewall Cracking 

One of the responsibilities of a tire belt is to strengthen the sidewall. This goes without saying that if your tire belt breaks, it weakens the sidewall. Over time, it can result in the cracking or separation of your sidewall, implying that a sidewall inspection should be done regularly.

Tread Issues

Just like the sidewall inspection, checking your treads for issues regularly is not a bad idea. If your tire belt breaks, your tire may get oddly shaped due to uneven wear. You can check for cracks or steel threads sticking out of the tread. If there are any, then the chances are that you have a broken tire belt. 

symptoms of broken tire belt
Don’t ignore these five symptoms of a broken belt in tire

What Does A Broken Tire Belt Sound Like?

A broken tire belt can be disturbing as well as distracting. You wouldn’t expect a vehicle with a broken tire belt to be as quiet as a Tesla, world you? Definitely not. Among the symptoms of a broken tire belt is the noise it generates. A broken tire belt will make a thumping noise while you are driving. 

The slower you go, the louder the noise will be. This is because of the absence of wind sound or engine noise that comes with faster speeds. This thumping noise happens because a broken belt will vibrate hard on uneven surfaces. 

How Long Can You Drive On A Broken Tire Belt?

Putting all the symptoms of a broken tire belt into consideration, it’ll take a daredevil to drive on it. Should you drive on a broken tire belt? The straight answer is no; you shouldn’t. Going on a broken tire belt not only puts you at risk but also those around you.

You should abstain from driving on broken tire belts for the love of yourself and public safety. To show you the danger here, your tire is literally ripping off from the inside. You can’t be too sure when you will have a blowout. To avoid a broken tire belt, you should inspect your tires regularly.

Can You Fix a Broken Belt in Tire?

The easiest and most efficient way to fix a broken tire belt is to buy a new tire set. Yes, you read right. To our dismay, once your tire belt is broken or separated, that’s the end of that tire. Any attempts to repair may lead to complications in the future.

This is because the damage done to a tire due to a broken or separated tire belt makes it not road-worthy. It’s all about your safety and the safety of others. Here is where maintenance comes in. Tires are bound to be replaced at some point; however, proper maintenance will, without a doubt, help it last longer. Maintaining your tires will save you a lot of trouble in the long run. 


Tires play a critical role in the proper functioning of any vehicle. Without tires, your vehicle just isn’t going anywhere. Similarly, any damage done to your car tires causes them to operate abnormally. Tires can have various problems; however, a broken tire belt is top of that list. Thanks to this ultimate guide, you now know the causes and symptoms of a damaged tire belt and why you shouldn’t be too comfortable driving on them. Always keep in mind that your safety comes first. Do you have a tire with a broken tire belt? It’s about time you changed it.


This section will answer two of the most frequently asked questions about broken tire belts. Without too much talk, let’s get to it.

Will A Broken Belt In A Tire Cause A Blowout?

Yes, a broken tire belt can potentially cause a blowout. While your tires won’t blow out once you begin noticing the earliest symptoms, you should be ready to change them as soon as possible. With the constant vibrations and steering wheel shaking, you know that your tire’s end is close. This is why driving on a broken tire belt isn’t a great idea.

Can A New Tire Have A Broken Belt?

The answer to this critical question is yes; you can have a new tire with a broken belt. The tread may look good and new, and it may still have the manufacturers’ logo. But beware, like all products, there is always that defective product. While no manufacturer deliberately makes a tire with a broken belt, it is one of the issues facing mass production of any product.

Be it one in a hundred or one in ten million, statistics show that there must be a defective product. So what does this mean? You wouldn’t want to be that lucky person who purchases that defective tire, would you? Certainly not. It means that a proper inspection must be done before leaving the stores with any tire, no matter how new it looks. That way, you save yourself this scenario. 

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