The research, commissioned by Continental Tyres, also found:
- One third of drivers didn't know how to check tread depth or tyre pressure
- 70% didn't know the minimum legal tread depth
- 20% thought they were driving on tyres with below the minimum tread depth
It's recommended that you check your tyres' pressure once a week, as properly inflated tyres help to improve fuel economy and reduce CO2 emissions.
The minimum legal tread depth is 1.6mm, but a tyre's effectiveness drops significantly when this falls below 3mm.
Continental says that when braking from 70mph in wet weather, a car with 1.6mm of tyre tread will still be travelling when the same car with 3mm of tread will have already stopped.
The company has launched a new website – www.3minmax.com - where it offers advice on how to carry out simple checks on your tyres.