Request an Appointment

The Difference Between Gripping and Slipping

Posted: Monday, January 4th 2016

Why Winter Tires Banner Image

What exactly is a Winter Tire?

Winter tires can be either studless or studded but all winter tires are designed to maintain better traction in extreme cold and in conditions like snowy, icy, or slush filled roads. The rubber in the winter tire is able to maintain its flexibility which means better handling in temperatures below 45 degrees Fahrenheit. Winter tires also have tread designs meant for driving on through those same road conditions we mentioned above. The deeper tread with more siping and biting edges also adds to the ability to give you the driver more control on the road.

Common misconceptions on the subject of winter tires:

  • I have an AWD/4WD vehicle so I don't need snow tires. (See YouTube video from Consumer Reports on why this is not true)
  • I only need 2 winter tires. (See YouTube Video from Michelin)

Do I really need winter tires?

To answer this question there are a few variables to consider. One of the main variables is temperature. Some of the other variables to consider are road conditions. Do the roads regularly get more than a dusting of snow and ice? If the winter temperatures are regularly below 45 degrees Fahrenheit, and you often get measurable snowfall and icy conditions, investing in a set of four snow tires is a must!

Are winter tires different than all-season tires? The answer is undeniably YES!

Image of car in ditch

All season tires are in fact very different from winter tires. All season tires are built to handle a wide range of road conditions such as dry roads, wet roads, and in many cases light snow. Winter tires are built to give you max performance in winter conditions like low temperatures, ice, slush, and snow. The compound of an all-season tire makes the tire tread stiffen in below freezing temperatures. This directly translates to less traction on the road. On the other hand, winter tires use specially formulated rubber compounds that stay flexible in cold temperatures. This flexibility allows winter tires to better grip the road surface. It also provides improved braking and stopping even in extreme conditions.

All season tires are not designed to handle extreme winter conditions. In our area winter weather can be extremely unpredictable. Having the right tire for the temperamental winter weather conditions we experience matters. From heavy snowfall, icy roads and frigid temperatures drivers are constantly having to react to the changing weather and road conditions. So why leave your vehicle unprepared to properly handle all of these winter weather conditions?

Outfitting your vehicle with winter tires is not an over-the-top precaution – it's an essential safety measure for you, your passengers and others on the road. They will ensure you have the best grip and handling possible in winter weather conditions.

Shop Now Button Image