If you’re going to buy a set of tires, you need to be able to talk the talk and understand the language to get the best value at a great price.
But shopping for tires in Herndon, Va is easy, especially if you’re looking for Mickey Thompson Tires, because the tire pros at Wiygul Automotive will be happy to give you a complete explanation of what you’re buying, why its the right fit for you and what the best value for your situation will be.
To help you get up to speed, though, here’s a quick run through a glossary of basic tire terminology. We’ve picked out some of the most intriguing terms; it won’t make you an expert, but it will definitely help you know what you’re talking about when you go to ask questions.
Most buyers are familiar with terms like alignment, balancing, mounting, rotation, sidewall and tread.
Here are some of the others:
1. Bead/Belt. These three terms pertain to the inner construction of the tire. The bead is the hoop of steel wire and reinforcements inside the tire where it connects to the wheel. The belt consists of the layer of cords that are wrapped in rubber and located between the tire tread and the body plies. They’re normally made of steel, but sometimes other materials such as fiberglass, polyester and nylon are used.
2. Contact patch. This is the part of the tire that comes into contact with the road; its also know as the tire’s footprint.
3. DOT number. The Department of Transportation number is a 10-12 character code that’s located on the sidewall of all tires that are sold in the US. The presence of the code indicates that the tire meets DOT standards, and the code itself provides information about things like size, manufacturer, type, date of manufacture, etc. Every tire you see in Herndon, Va will have a DOT number if you’re looking for a set of Mickey Thompson tires.
4. Low-Profile Tire. This pertains to tires with a short sidewall and the relationship of the sidewall height to width. Low-profile tires tend to offer better handling, but there’s less cushioning between the wheel and the road so the ride can be a little rougher.
5. Sipes. These are smalls slits within the tire’s tread that increase traction in wet or snowy conditions. They open as the tire rolls, which in turn keeps more turner on the road to offer better grip.
6. Speed Rating. This is an alphanumeric code that indicates the top speed at which the tire can travel. A T-rated tire, for example, is designed for family sedans and vans with a top speed of just under 120 mph. A Y-rated tire, meanwhile, is designed for exotic sports cars and has a top-end speed of 186 mph.
7. TPMS. The Tire Pressure Monitoring System is a safety system that monitors tire pressure and notifies you when a tire, or multiple tires, fall to an unacceptable level.
Hopefully, this will give you a more in-depth understanding of some of the more interesting aspects of tires. And if you’re looking for a set of Mickey Thompson Tires in Herndon, Va, consult the folks at Wiygul Automotive. They’ve got the expertise to answer all your questions, no matter how obscure or technical they may be.