tires December 09, 2019

Is It a Good Idea to have both Winter and All-season Tires?

Tires contribute to the performance and safety of your vehicle. They provide stability and reliability. Your tires are an investment and knowing the type to choose can make a big difference in life of the tire. The right tire should deliver proper traction to meet your individual needs.  Every driver's needs are different depending on the weather and road conditions they will encounter throughout the year.  

All-season or Winter Tires? 

Most new cars today come with all-season tires. They are popular and affordable. All season tires provide safe driving for all types of mild weather. BUT, all season tires aren’t meant for use through out the year – winter, snow and low temperatures are their kryptonite. And while winter tires are undeniably superior in extreme winter conditions, they will wear down faster on dry, warm pavement. All-season tires are durable, possessing tread wear that performs well in both dry and wet conditions including moderate snow. 

The Difference Between Winter Tires and All-Season 

The main difference between all season and winter tires is the different treads and flexibility. All-season tires have normal traction and can handle a variety of road conditions. Winter tires have deeper grooves and sharp irregular edges. They are designed to grip snow and ice. Tires have thin slits, called sipes, across their surface to help improve traction. All-season tires have sipes to manage heat when roads are hot. Winter tires have many more sipes to provide traction on wintery roads. 

Tire Rubber and Flexibility 

Tires are not all made with the same rubber compound. An all-season tire compound is designed to work equally in both winter and summer road conditions. The compound hardens and lose flexibility as the temperature drops. This causes less traction. A winter tire rubber compound is soft in the cold weather which leads to better grip while driving. The rubber remains more flexible allowing the tire to conform to the road better in extremely cold conditions. It does not lose any flexibility and traction. 

Tire Maintenance 

No matter what tires you choose, be sure to keep up with regular tire maintenance. This will protect and help your tires last longer. 

  • Maintain proper inflation 
  • Rotate your tires 
  • Inspect tires once a month 
  • Practicing good driving habits 
  • Ensure that wheels are properly alignment 

Can You Drive on All-season Tires All year? 

Should you drive all year with all-season tires? If you drive in areas that have a more mild winter, then yes. Driving on them in more extreme winter conditions on all season tires is not recommended. If you have questions you can get expert advice from our Uniroyal Tire Burke, VA location. Ask about how to match tires to your vehicle, your climate and your driving habits. 

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