What Are Summer and Winter Tires?
Winter tires are made with special low temperature resilient rubber compounds and have very deep treads that will allow any vehicle to plow through snowy roads and ice. All-season tires, while great for most conditions, might not be to handle powder covered streets.
What makes these tires so useful is the level of grip they provide. All-season tires are great but they can become brittle in the cold temperatures. The winter tire compound will always remain pliable, even in the coldest temperatures. When the tire is providing grip, the vehicles electronic safety features, such as the anti-lock brakes and traction control, can work effectively.
There are certain winter tires that come with little studs to give the driver more grip than a wide receiver’s gloves. These tires are advisable if one lives in Siberia or Canada, but if the snow stops, these tires might not be allowed due to the damage they can cause to certain roads.
So, now that you know a little about winter tires, how many should one buy? Well, four is always advisable, even if your vehicle is only two-wheel drive. If you drive a Honda Accord and only equip it with snow tires in the front, the sedan could spin and if you have a Ford Mustang, the handling could be compromised if the tires are only used on the rears. Always buy four winter tires, never two.
Summer tires are not nearly as complex as winter tires. They are not meant to keep a car on the road in the snow, but are for use on dry pavement. These tires are sometimes referred too as high-performance tires and will provide massive levels of grip on the right road surface.
Sadly, it’s not all good news, as that extra grip will cause the tires to wear out early, some around 10,000 miles. Still, if one has the money, these tires can provide extra grip, acceleration and braking ability to any vehicle.
When To Change Tires
There are no set dates on when one should change over from summer to winter or winter to summer tires. If you’ve lived in a certain area for a decent period of time, you should know when the weather usually turns. Be sure not to wait too long in the winter to change over, as one snowy day with summer tires can be the end of your vehicle. TorqueNews would advise making the change around November and depending on where you live, that can be in the first part or later in the month.
When the weather begins to turn, it’s best to get those winter tires off, as dry roads can wear them out. Usually one should take them off around March.
It’s best to buy new rims with those tires, as that can save you massive amounts of time when changing them over. Weather is cruel and after a snowstorm, the temperature could rise and the snow could vanish for weeks, so quick tire changes are advisable. This could also keep those summer rims clean when it comes time to sport them.