After cruising the roads all summer long, the winter season suddenly approaches at a quickening pace. In many parts of the country it becomes essential to replace your summer tires with durable winter tires, so that you can depend on reliable traction and increased control when driving in the snow. Driving in these conditions can be particularly dangerous, especially if you aren’t using the correct tires, because it can be easy for your vehicle to lose traction when traveling up or down hill. The vehicle’s breaking ability can also be affected, which is particularly dangerous in areas of low visibility. Fortunately, snow tires are designed to enhance your driving experience by increasing your vehicle’s control on the road. A 2011 study in Quebec conclusively shows a reduction in road accidents and fatalities since winter tires became compulsory for the province.
Why Winter Tires Are Essential
Winter tires are made from a low temperature resilient rubber that offers a better grip, and added flexibility, when driving on messy roads. The winter tires are also designed with a deep tread pattern that’s used to dig into the snow for added traction and grip. Most all season tires fail to offer you the same protection because their tread patterns are shallow and different rubber compounds are used that may become brittle in colder temperatures. The compounds used to create winter tires have the ability to stay pliable even in very cold temperatures. This offers you a much safer ride and added confidence knowing that your vehicle will have enhanced handling and control. Without dependable grip in winter conditions, you risk your safety and well being. According to The Rubber Association of Canada, “All tire rubber will begin to stiffen as the weather gets colder, but the latest generations of winter tires maintain their elasticity even at extremely low temperatures approaching -30°C and below, thus providing superior traction and grip.” The tire’s traction and tread pattern are responsible for proper steering, breaking ability, and to prevent your vehicle from becoming stuck in the snow.
Why Can’t I Leave My Snow Tires On All Year?
Technically you could leave your snow tires on throughout the year but it would have its disadvantages. Snow tires tend to be louder in dry conditions and their rubber will wear out much faster since it’s meant for colder conditions. If your tread is being worn down from driving in warmer seasons, you may be left with less than perfect grip capabilities. It’s a much better idea to have two sets of tires for your vehicle, one for the warmer months and a separate set of snow tires for the winter season. You’ll save on wear and tear since your tires will be rotated and you’ll ensure a safer and surer ride during the cold season.
Do All Four Tires Need To Be Replaced?
It’s recommended that you purchase a second pair of rims for your snow tires, so that they can be installed quickly and easily onto your vehicle. This will also cut down on your expenses in the long run since it is much cheaper and more efficient to install mounted tires onto your vehicle. You’ll be able to store away the set that’s not in use until they are needed, and rotate the tires out as the seasons change.
The Advantages Of Winter Tires
Instead of relying on the same set of tires throughout the year consider purchasing a quality set of winter tires. This way, the next time you’re driving in a snowstorm you’ll be thankful that you have the added traction you need for a safe ride home. You’ll be happy about choosing this smart investment because you’ll greatly lengthen the life of both sets of tires. Snow tires may be one of the most important vehicle investments you can make because your safety is worth every penny.
Author Bio: Guest post contributed by Neil Hilden for Wish.co.uk – see their online store to find out more about driving experiences. Neil is a freelance automotive writer.