If you’ve been preparing your car for the upcoming winter, you may be asking yourself whether having snow tires installed is a good idea. Most people think that having all-weather tires is enough to bring good performance in the adverse winter conditions. But, when push comes to shove, snow tires are designed to handle the cold and they’ll keep you and your family safer this winter while on the road.
How are Snow Tires Different from All-Weather Tires?
All-weather tires are specially designed to work pretty well in a variety of road conditions, from completely dry conditions to wet roads and light snow fall. But the tread compound in these tires can harden in low temperatures which can affect the level of traction between the road and the tires. Winter tires, on the other hand, are specially designed to perform in winter conditions – low temperatures, ice, slush, and snowy roads. They use special rubber compounds that do not harden in cold conditions, so they have better grip and braking performance than all-weather tires in winter conditions.
Do You Still Need Snow Tires if Your Car has Four-Wheel Drive?
All-wheel and four-wheel drive do improve traction because it sends power to all four wheels as you accelerate, instead of just the front or rear two. But it doesn’t help when you apply brakes. Winter tires, however, improve traction at all times, so you should still have them installed even if your car already has four-wheel or all-wheel drive.
Can I Use Snow Tires Year-Round?
Technically, but it is highly recommended that you do not. Used in warm weather, the softer rubber in winter tires will wear out much faster than the rubber used in all-weather tires. In the long run, it would end up costing you a lot more money using the snow tires all year than just switching between the two sets.
Do You Need Them?
So the question remains – does your car need snow tires? Undoubtedly in the Baltimore area, where winter temperatures regularly fall below 45 degrees F, a set of snow tires is a great investment that will keep you and your family safe.
Need New Tires Installed or Other Car Maintenance?
Auto Stop Limited Inc. is happy to service your vehicle and make sure all of your maintenance needs are properly addressed and resolved. Contact Auto Stop Limited Inc. online or give us a call at (410) 467-7600 to get your questions answered today. To get more vehicle maintenance tips, follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.