Can I Drive 200 Miles on a Donut? (Yes or No)

Can I Drive 200 Miles on a Donut

A Donut is the name given to a type of spare tire because they are relatively smaller when compared to normal tires.

It is called “donuts” because of its shape. They look round and puffed just like donuts, only that they are bigger when compared to the conventional donuts that we all know.

Not having a donut tire can be stressful and frustrating because it is supposed to fill in for normal tires when the normal tires get bad unexpectedly.

However, how long can I drive with a donut? Can I drive 200 miles on a donut?

Driving 200 miles on a donut is not impossible but you shouldn’t try it because donut tires are not built like the normal tires, they are just supposed to take you to the next repair shop when you get a flat tire or when your tire gets spoilt. Donut tires are not meant to be driven to 200 miles.

What is Considered a Donut?

A donut is smaller than the normal car tires and it’s also a less durable type of tire. They serve as a replacement or spare tire for times when you get a flat tire or you urgently need to change your tire because it has been damaged.

Donut tires are smaller so that they can fit into your car trunk and are only meant to be used for temporary fixes, which means that you can’t drive them for too long because they’re not built for long-term usage.

Importance of Donuts in a Car?

Every car owner or driver should have a donut tire in their car because they serve as insurance for your car tires.

Having a donut tire is important but making sure that the donut tire is in a good condition is even more important so that you won’t be stranded when you need to use it in cases of emergency.

As a car owner, you should inspect your donut tires before embarking on a journey of any sort, you should check to see if there are any cracks or if any part of your tire has been punctured.

Donuts serve as a form of backup for times when your car tires unexpectedly get punctured or damaged.

Can I Drive 200 Miles on a Donut?

Donut tires are not designed to travel long distances, they are just replacements to get your car to the nearest repair shop and get your tires fixed.

You should not drive your car for as far as 200 miles on a donut because they are not built to be driven for long distances, it is one of the reasons why they’re called donut tires.

Driving with a donut tire can be more dangerous when the donut is used to replace a front wheel.

There’s more weight on the front wheels because the engine is housed there and that’s where most of the acceleration, braking, and turning happens so driving for long periods on donuts can cause other problems to the car.

What Miles Should You Drive on a Donut?

Donut tires are designed as replacements so they shouldn’t be driven for more than 50-70 miles at a speed limit of 50mph. Going beyond this mileage and speed would be abusing the tire.

Driving a donut tire for more than the stipulated distance can be disadvantageous to the driver because the spare tires could get worn out too, and it could also damage parts of the car’s engine.

Most donut tires do not have threads on them and that makes them vulnerable to projectiles and road hazards when driven for too long.

What Happens if You Drive on a Donut for Too Long?

When donut tires are overused, they tend to damage some systems in the car; the transmission and suspension systems.

In really severe situations, the donut tire can get worn out too which will cause you to be stranded.

Donut tires are not as wide as the normal tires so the car handling won’t be as smooth as it’s supposed to be and the car won’t be balanced because of the size of the tire.

Driving on donut tires for too long can affect the wheel bearings because the car is not running in tires of the same size, the bearings of the other normal tires are doing a lot more.

The brakes, suspension, and transmission gears are other parts of your car that could get affected when you drive on donuts for long periods.

Things to Know When Driving on a Donut

When driving on a donut, there are a few things you should note and constantly observe to avoid damaging other parts of your car.

  • Stay Within the Speed Limit: As reiterated earlier, the speed limit when driving on donuts is 50mph and it should not be exceeded to avoid blow-outs.
  • Check Tire Pressure Regularly: Even when it’s not in use, you should check your spare tire regularly and make sure that it has the proper inflation pressure. The safe air pressure for donut tires is 60 pounds psi (per square inch).
  • Stay Alert: When driving on a donut, you should know that your stability and traction systems are not working perfectly, so much attention should be paid to your vehicle’s handling.
  • Use the Brakes Carefully: The ABS light of your car might come on when driving on a donut so you should carefully brake when you need to and give some extra space between your car and the ones ahead.
  • Drive With Extra Caution: Driving on a donut would cause inaccurate readings in your speedometer because the way cars are built, everything needs to be balanced in a particular way.

Also, it would be best if you were extra careful when taking curves because of the compromised handling.


You should always make sure your tires are in good conditions before  leaving your home at all times so that the chances of using the donut spare tire is reduced.

Donut tires are only to be used as replacements to get you to the nearest repair shop. They are not built for long distances and high speed driving. Remember to drive carefully when using a donut spare tire.