The onset of winter for drivers is unpleasant weather surprises and worries associated with preparing the car for the harsh season. The quality of winter tyres primarily determines the confidence in the movement of a car on a snowy or icy track. Of course, you can ride on summer tyres in the cold, but there is a high risk of causing significant damage to your car and creating an emergency on the road. You should bear in mind that different models of winter tyres behave differently in other conditions. Choosing a specific winter tyre model is not easy. In most cases, to find out which option will be optimal for the driver and his car, you need to consider the accumulated experience and give preference to proven products. Also, the choice of tyres for winter is influenced mainly by the weather in your region. Therefore, it is impossible to say with confidence that a specific model is better than another. However, some general tips for choosing winter tyres for your car will come in handy.
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Spiked or not?
It is impossible to answer this question unequivocally. In theory, the studs are designed to guarantee an increase in the coefficient of adhesion of the wheels to the highway, which becomes of great importance in icy conditions. However, in some cases, non-studded winter tyres perform much better on icy trails than studded models. How can this be explained?
The way a car behaves while driving is influenced by the presence or absence of studs and the chemical composition of the tyres, the tread pattern.
Let’s try to understand what is better to choose in certain conditions?
Winter tyres with studs
Some are convinced that winter tyres must be studded. This is not true in all cases. Yes, winter tyres with studs make starting more manageable and reduce braking distances on icy roads. This will provide a better grip in frosty weather, but these tyres will lose their effectiveness as the snow melts. Because of the spikes, the car will only get even more mired in loose snow, which will significantly complicate the movement.
When choosing winter tyres – whether studded or non-studded – remember to be extremely careful while driving, especially in slush and icy conditions.
When driving on ice or knurled snow, the studs increase the coefficient of adhesion of the tyres to the highway.
There are two options available: buying rubber for winter with studs and studding tyres without studs. The more studs on the tyre, the better the car’s behaviour (shorter braking distance, reduced risk of slipping). The ideal option is to place the studs not in one line but in a chaotic manner over the entire surface of the tyre.
Attention: studding is not suitable for all rubber models – You should discuss this with the seller.
Winter tyres without studs:
When driving in snowy conditions, the machine’s handling is affected by the number of studs and the tyres’ tread pattern. Most often, the most effective tyres are those with many checkers in the shape of a rectangle, which are staggered. The depth of the pattern is also essential – for most of the models, this figure reaches 0.9-1 cm. The presence of small stripes (sipes) on the tyre tread also affects the grip on the highway. Thanks to them, models with and without spikes show their best side on the road.
If the highways in your region are covered with wet snow, or there is no snow at all in your region, it is better to buy tyres without studs. The fact is that the spikes do not allow full acceleration and braking on the asphalt. Also, they reduce the contact area of the wheel with the road, which reduces the coefficient of adhesion and, consequently, worsens the car’s handling. And when driving on an asphalt road, spiked tyres will make a lot of noise.
Choosing tyres for winter without studs: what to consider:
On wet snow, a car behaves best if it is shod with rubber with a directional tread pattern, which removes the melted mess from under the wheels. The design of these tyres for winter is reminiscent of summer rain tyres, with a herringbone.
General tips before buying tyres for winter:
Winter models can be used on average for 2-4 seasons. When they wear out, the tread depth is reduced to 4 mm – You must replace the tyres.
If you have no experience with winter tyres or tyres in general, we recommend browsing through the online catalogue and chat with the representative before you buy car tyres online.
The chemical composition of winter tyres is selected so that the wheel sticks to the icy road. That is why soft tyres are better suited for driving on a snowy or icy track. On asphalt in winter, soft rubber will also not perform its functions; it will only wear out faster – harder tyres are required. To determine the level of tyre hardness by touch; it is better to contact the seller with this request.
Tyres for winter with asymmetric tread pattern most often show a more significant effect. For example, the outer part of the rubber is responsible for moving on the asphalt; the inner part is responsible for the snow. The only important thing is the correct installation of these tyres following the markings on them.