When the winter is over, most drivers, unsure what the coming season may bring, are very close to Hamlet’s dilemma. Instead of pondering a state of being versus a state of not being, they are calculating whether it’s best to buy a new set of tyres or not. Full of doubt, they talk with neighbors and read online forums to answer their nagging question: to change or not to change?
Some say: as we don’t wear sandals in the winter, in the summer we shouldn’t drive on winter tyres. There’s a lot of truth in it since different types of tyres are characterized by various tread patterns and perform differently depending on the surface.
In this article, we will answer some of the most common questions about changing tyres. Please visit the website mycarneedsthis.com for more information on how to take care of your car.
Why do you need season dedicated tyres on your wheels?
At least for several reasons. First of all, summer tires differ from winter ones in the composition of the mixture. Winter tyres remain flexible even at very low temperatures. However, at high summer temperatures, they become too soft and are more susceptible to damage. Winter tyres also differ from summer ones in terms of the tread pattern. They have a tread compound design to work in cold temperatures and can provide traction at below freezing. The tread pattern is a little bit deeper and more broken up with more cuts and so-called fins. This design allows the tyre to maintain traction in winter conditions, but in summer conditions, it can notably reduce its efficiency. Anywhere where you see a regular snowfall, a dedicated winter tyre will provide you significantly better traction in the snow and on the ice that summer ones and even the best all-season tires can do.
Summer tyres are going to perform best either when it’s dry or wet outside. New tires with sufficiently deep tread can drain water from under the wheels, and their rigid structure means that they provide good traction even in the heat.
All-season tyres – is it a game worth playing?
The general rule is that it depends where you drive most. If most often on the roads in the city, all-season tyres may be suited for you. But the matter can be complicated. Sometimes in the autumn-winter time we drive on all possible surfaces: in the rain, on damp asphalt, on a dry road with excellent grip, snow, and ice. Therefore, the differences between all-season and winter tires are becoming blurred. With current tyre technology and capricious climate, not everyone has to change tyres twice a year.
You need to look at your car journeys. If you drive a lot, then two sets of tires have an economic sense – they will last for twice as long. Still, if you drive not too much – two sets will grow old sooner than they will wear off on the street.
When should I change my tyres?
There is no one rule on when to change tyres. There is also no magic date in the calendar to be observed. The weather can be extremely inconsistent. Sometimes the winter weather lasts until March or even April. Other times, at the end of February, thermometers show temperatures much above zero. It has been accepted, however, and it is worth sticking to that summer tyres are best when the average daily outside temperature is above 7 degrees Celsius. Just make sure that the temperature persists for one week or two.
Another factor determining to change is the tyre wear. Remember that tire wear has a significant impact on driving safety, i.e., for traction and braking distance. The shallow tread is more likely to cause trouble controlling your car. This is especially important in wet conditions, where tyre wear may affect the phenomenon of aquaplaning. In this situation, the tread is not able to drain water from under the wheels. Then, between the wheels and the surface of the road, a layer of water is formed. It results in a car losing traction and begins to slip uncontrollably.
We need to consider a lot of factors before deciding whether we need to change our tires or if all-season ones are our perfect match. The matter is highly individual and requires the driver’s involvement in tracking his driving habits. However, it is worth remembering that if we are owners of two sets of tyres, those stored in bad conditions lose their properties, and I can even cause irreversible changes, excluding tyres from further use. Let’s keep tyres in a shaded place, and regardless of whether we change them seasonally or not, visit the workshop so that a specialist assesses their condition every year.