For tires manufactured in the year 2000 – present
The date of manufacture is the last four digits of the DOT code. The first two digits are the week of manufacture, and the last two digits are the year. For example, if the last four digits of the DOT code are 0203, that means that the tire was manufactured during the second week of the year 2003. Pretty simple, right? However…if your tires were made before 2000, it gets a bit more complicated.
For tires manufactured before the year 2000
The date of manufacture is the last three digits of the code. The first two digits refer to the week within that year. For example, if the last 3 digits are 022, it means that the tire was manufactured in the second week of the year, and the year is the second year of the decade. This is where it gets confusing — there’s no universal identifier that signifies which decade, so in this example the tire could have been manufactured in 1982 or 1992. Some tires do have a small triangle following the DOT code to indicate the 1990s.
Seeing an incomplete DOT number?
If you look at the tires sidewall and see a DOT number that appears to be incomplete, that’s because the DOT’s current regulations require the entire number to be branded on only one sidewall, while the opposite sidewall is branded with just the first few digits. To see the entire DOT number, just look on