With the winter season just around the corner, it’s essential that you know if your vehicle’s tires are adequate for the snowy weather. The auto experts in Huntington, West Virginia, can assist you in finding the correct winter tires for your car.
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Even though you can get away with driving your all-weather tires year-round, winter tires are going to be more equipped for driving in snowy, wet, or icy conditions. Auto experts in Huntington, West Virginia can assist you in choosing the best snow tires for your vehicle.
Winter vs. All-Weather Tires
Winter tires are specifically designed for weather conditions under 45 degrees. Although you can drive on winter tires year-round, you will wear out the tread of the tires much faster. Winter tires will also give you the best traction and safety during the winter, decreasing your chances of spinning out due to the snow and/or black ice.
The rubber and tread of winter tires are different from all-terrain or all-weather tires. Winter tires are made of a different type of rubber that contains aromatic oil and silica. The tires need to be softer in colder temperatures and perform well in wet conditions. This special type of rubber improves abrasion resistance, performance on ice and snow, and wet grip performance.
Winter and normal tires will appear similar in normal conditions, but when you compare the two in temperatures below 45 degrees, you will see that the normal tires will harden or stiffen while the winter tires will not have changed at all. People mainly choose to buy winter tires because of their resistance to change in cold weather.
Tire compound differences
Winter tires and all-season tires have a difference in the tread compound. The three main kinds of compounds are a summer compound, an all-season compound, and a winter compound.
- A summer compound operates best in higher temperatures
- An all-season compound is designed to be balanced for both winter and summer duties
- A winter compound is designed to operate in lower temperatures
Tire siping differences
A tire’s siping improves traction on slippery surfaces such as ice, snow, and rain. The more sipes that a tire has, the better the traction. This means that winter tires tend to have more siping than all-season ones.
Why do I need winter tires?
Winter tires, by design, are more helpful to drivers in winter conditions. Their unique design allows drivers to stop quicker, accelerate quicker, and gain better traction on the road than all-weather tires will allow.
Consider purchasing winter tires for your car so you can be at ease while driving your car this winter. It is especially important if you know your tires don’t do well on winter roads.
Common tire issues
Regardless if you have front-wheel-drive, rear-wheel drive, four-wheel-drive, or all-wheel drive, winter tires will help prevent common tire issues that occur due to the cold temperatures during the winter season.
Common tire issues include:
- Reduced tire pressure due to contraction from cold are
- Tire blowouts caused by low inflation
- Weakened and brittle rubber
- Tire slippage and hydroplaning
Why are my winter tires loud?
If you have recently installed winter tires on your vehicle and are noticing a loud noise while you drive, don’t worry because it’s completely normal.
Winter tires are generally louder than all-season tires because manufacturers are more focused on other qualities of the tire to make them suitable for the winter road condition. The louder noise is a result of three design choices of a tire including treads, spacing, and the composition.
Winter tires are designed with wide spaced between the treads ot allow for good grip, but if the roads are clear, you will hear the loud sound of compressed air passing through the grooves. Only the most premium winter tires have uniquely shaped grooves that prevent air compression to reduce the amount of noise.
Winter tires have a huskier look due to the design of the treads such as asymmetrical, arrowhead, and V-shaped. Each of these designs help give the vehicle traction on the snow; however, the increased traction comes at the cost of louder tires.
Winter tires typically have a softer composition compared to all-season tires to allow them to stay pliable and sticky at low temperatures. Winter tires bend and grip snow in a similar manner as the soles of a winter boot. The composition of winter tires offers excellent driving conditions during the winter season but in return, you will notice more road noise.
If you are concerned about your winter tires, you can speak with auto experts in Huntington, West Virginia to ease your worry.
Types of tires
- Studded tires
The spikes on the surface help reduce sliding, which in turn improves driving on snowy or icy roads.
- Friction Tires
Friction tires have a special groove in the tire to improve their grip.
These tires are the best choice for year-round operation because they are adequate for any weather condition; however, tires specifically made for winter weather will be your best choice.
The surface of European tires is supplemented with grooves and notches to drain water and wet snow, making them suitable for slush and wet snow.
Scandinavian tires have a soft rubber compound with many cuts and blades on the surface, making them useful for driving on ice and snow.
If you are still debating whether you should get winter tires for your vehicle this season, speak with auto experts in Huntington, West Virginia about the needs of your vehicle and if it’s the best choice for you.