Winter Tires

Unlike all-season tires, winter tires are specially designed for driving in winter conditions such as snow, sleet, slush, ice, and even cold, dry roads. Winter tires have three specific features that make them ideal: the tread,  tread depth and patterns, and biting edges.

Tread: the tread of a winter tire is made from a specially formulated rubber that stays flexible at low temperatures giving you better vehicle control. The tread rubber of an all-season tire or summer tire stiffens in extreme cold temperatures and becomes less able to provide sufficient traction. 

Tread Depth and Pattern: winter tires also feature a deeper tread depth and a more unique tread pattern than all-season tires.  This deeper tread depth reduces snow build up and gives you better traction, while the unique tread patterns are designed to channel snow and slush, and to expel water.  

Biting Edges: last, but not least, a winter tire’s tread also has an increased number of biting edges and tiny slits that work together to provide better traction on ice.

Because of these features you will get much better traction, acceleration, handling and breaking performance from a winter tire than you would an all-season tire when it comes to driving in winter conditions.

Do I need a set of winter tires?

Whether or not you need snow tires really depends on a few things, and there is really no clear cut answer. First of all, consider where you live. If you live where the winters are harsh, and snow and icy conditions are common, then it may be worth considering investing in a set. How comfortable you are driving in the snow also factors in, as does whether or not you can simply stay at home when severe winter weather hits. Another factor to consider is whether your vehicle is front-wheel, rear-wheel or all-wheel drive. Finally, your budget is another thing to consider. Snow tires can be very expensive, and the larger tires your vehicle requires, the more you will pay.
If you are considering adding snow tires to your vehicle during the winter months, consult your vehicle’s manual and the manufacturer’s recommendations. If you’re still not sure, call your dealership. Many dealers can help you decide on the exact tires you need for your particular make and model. Remember to install them on all four tires, and once the warmer weather arrives, switch back to all season tires.
Have winter tires made a difference for you?