With some winter months often dropping below freezing, you might want to consider winter tyres. Driving in adverse conditions is possibly one of the most difficult and dangerous tasks drivers face. In parts of Europe, it’s common or sometimes even a legal requirement to have a set of summer and winter tyres.
The main difference between normal summer tyres and winter tyres is quite simple. Summer tyres work well in dry conditions but stiffen up when it is cold. Winter tyres consist of a special rubber with a high silica content and a deeper tread pattern designed to remain flexible in low temperatures. This means that your vehicle offers better grip for braking and handling on snow, ice and wet roads in conditions below 7°C. They are also specially designed to perform better with frost, slush and mud.
Winter tyres are essential in areas where heavy rain, snow and ice occur regularly or if you are travelling to parts of Europe with such weather conditions. If you travel extensively for work, we recommend winter tyres or at least all-season tyres for added safety.
While winter tyres are not compulsory in the UK at the moment, you should always consider how often you drive in hazardous conditions. Even though many areas only rarely experience the sort of weather that justifies spending the extra money, safety should always come first. Not only do you have to regularly clear snow from your car and drive slower on ungritted roads, you also face the risk of skidding on black ice. It really makes you wonder if winter tyres could be the solution to all your winter driving problems while providing much-needed peace of mind.
All-season tyres, on the other hand, use a similar compound to winter tyres but with a different tread pattern. If you don’t want to swap between the two, all season tyres are better than summer tyres in wetter weather but not as good as winter tyres in slush, frost or mud. But before you decide, all season tyres are easy to drive thanks to stable cornering and good traction in wet and dry conditions. Specially designed blocks ensure that more water is shifted which ultimately reduces the risk of hydroplaning and losing control. The high-density grooves are effective at helping the tread to grip the road surface in freezing conditions.
However as impressive as these all-season tyres are, they don’t all perform equally. If you want to use specialist tyres for winter, you should have two sets to maximise driving performance and safety in all conditions. If you’re looking to buy winter tyres, you can identify them through symbols represented by a snowflake or snow-capped mountains. They are also known as cold weather tyres.
At Elite Garages you will find quality local tyres, winter tyres and all-season tyres for most vehicle makes and models. Our knowledgeable staff will give you the advice you need to improve your winter driving experience and help you find the right tyre for your car. Call us now to book a free tyre check or reserve your tyres online. You can also fill in the callback form and one of our expert tyre technicians will be in touch.