i was just recently in a fender bender where somebody hit my passenger rear side of my truck leaving a nice 3 inch cut in the sidewall of my tire after looking at it, it looks like its only cut through the outer rubber layer from what i assume is just for cosmetics more than anything important none of the belts are showing would this tire be safe to run? i have driven on it for the past 500 miles and no bulging or separation of the cut has occurred enter image description here

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    Welcome to Motor Vehicle Maintenance & Repair! You won't see belts on the side of a tire, as the belts are located on the perimeter face of the tire that rests on the roadway surface. Whether the tire should be replaced is hard to say w/o seeing the damage...how about amending your question to include a photo? May 11, 2018 at 22:46
  • When in doubt swap it out.
    – Moab
    May 11, 2018 at 23:05
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    Not really in doubt I think it’ll be fine I just need another opinion May 11, 2018 at 23:45

1 Answer 1


If you aren't seeing cords through the cut and there's no bulging going on, the tire should be fine. Keep an eye on it as well as on the tire pressure. If you see abnormal leakage, get it replaced. Note: While there's no belts on the side, there are sidewall support which will show cords. This is usually nylon while the main belts are usually steel or newer ones even Kevlar. Normal passenger tire sidewall would never be able to support itself on rubber alone. If these are LT's, you'll have several layers of sidewall support.

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