DOT Tire Identification Number
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) requires that every tire manufacturer provide a standardized identification number or code. This consists of the manufacturer's plant code, the tire size, brand, and the week/year the tire was made.
The DOT number is stamped on both sides of the tire sidewall and can be found by looking for the DOT designation on the sidewall. The other sidewall of the tire will have the initials DOT and the manufacturer's plant code.
Example - DOT CC9L XYZ 1016
In this example, the first two characters will represent the Manufacturer Plant Code. This indicates the manufacturer as well as the exact plant the tire was built.
The next set of characters represent the Tire Size. This code references the size of the tire, such as 205/55R-16.
The next three characters represent the Brand Characteristics. These are significant characteristics about the tire as determined by the manufacturer.
The last set of characters indicate the Date Code or build date of the tire by Manufacture Week / Year. Tires produced after January 1, 2000 will have a four-digit date code at the end of the DOT number, as displayed in our example. The first two digits represent the week of production and the last two digits represent the last two digits of the year of production so 1016 indicates that the tire was produced in the 10th week of the year 2016.
DOT Identification Prior to 2000
Prior to the year 2000, the date code will be restricted to a three digit number representing the week (first two digits) and the year (one digit) of production. For example, if the last three digits are 439, the tire was produced in the 43rd week of 1999.
Learn more about Reading the Tire Sidewall