There is a lot to know about tires on your vehicle. You may know how to see if your treads are wearing out, or what to do if you have a flat. However, did you know that certain tires are better for different seasons? Learn more about how to know how to choose tires for the conditions outside.
How-to Choose Tires for the Conditions: Road and Weather Considerations
Summer tires are great during warm weather. These tires have a ride tread and are made out of softer rubber compounds. These allow the tires to be able to have responsive handling in both wet and dry conditions. Typically, they have deep circumferential grooves to provide better traction and resistance to hydroplaning.
In warmer weather, summer tires usually preform better than winter or all-season tires do. However, it is important to note that summer tires should not be driven at temperatures below 45 degrees Fahrenheit. Above this temperature, the soft rubber compounds remain soft and provide excellent grip. As the temperatures rise, performance increases. Under 45 degrees, this compound becomes hard in a process called the ‘glass transition phase’. In this state, the tires can actually crack, causing a dangerous situation. If you are going to be exclusively driving in warm weather, summer tires are the way to go when you choose tires for the conditions.
Winter tires are designed for cold weather driving. Unlike summer tires, winter tires stay flexible at temperatures under 45 degrees Fahrenheit. They also are made with tread patterns that will grip better in snow and ice. These tires do not handle well in warm, dry conditions. They will also wear rapidly in those conditions. This is important to know when trying to choose tires for the conditions.
All-season tires are a good balance between summer and winter tires. They handle well in warm conditions, both wet and dry. However, in those situations, they will not handle quite as well as summer tires. Also, they will preform better than summer tires in cold, wet conditions. However, they will not preform as well as winter tires would.
All-season tires are best for certain climates that are not overly rainy and also do not get below 45 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter very often. Keep all of this in mind when you choose tires for the conditions you will be driving in. Also, remember that just because you select a seasonal tire during one season, you can always change these out when the temperature or seasons change.