Winter weather driving (01/01/2020)
It's JANUARY ! Winter is HERE now.
Winter brings cold, wet weather, frost, sleet and probably snow as you already have seen.
Work best in temperatures of 7 degrees and lower. They are not just "Snow tyres", but actually are "Cold Weather" tyres. This means they perform better in ALL the conditions that Winter brings.
1/ They are NOT soft rubber, but the compounds are formulated to keep "flexible" in these lower temperatures, thus maintaining the level of grip required. Our normal summer tyres loose grip as the compounds stiffen up at low temperatures, with the resulting loss of grip.
2/ Winter tyres have a large quantity of "sipes", they are small grooves in the tread that act like a squeegee, removing much more water from under the tyre, making driving on wet roads far safer.
3/ The tread design is of a very "corse" design with large grooves and more cutting edges to cope with Snow and Sleet. Winter tyres with good self clearing properties help keep you on the move, and also just as important, Stop ! (especially down hill).
An alternative would be "All Season" tyres
This type of tyre gives a 50/50 Summer / Winter application, which gives a compromise suitable for all year round. This type of tyre is becoming more popular, slightly more expensive that a normal summer but comparable to a Winter tyre. These will at least cope with most of what the UK weather has to offer ! A good option to full Winter tyres that you leave on all year, no swapping around at all.
A possible addition for Winter tyres, would be to mount then on a set of Winter wheels, in effect, giving you two sets of wheels, making the swap over easier and more convenient to do. This works out more cost effective if you are the person who keeps your car for a number of years. Your tyres last much longer as you can only use one set at once ! Please call me to see what the options may be for your vehicle, as often vehicles with very large wheels can often have a better option with smaller wheels / tyres.