Cold weather tyres: a waste of money or an essential winter fitment? The matter is subject to much debate. Read on to find out more on whether cold weather tyres are worth it…
Are Cold Weather Tyres Worth It?
Here are the facts about cold-weather tyres to help you make up your mind whether they’re right for you.
What Are Cold Weather Tyres?
The big difference between cold weather tyres and summer tyres tread depth, with winter tyres having one or two millimetres more. The grooves in a winter cold weather tyre are wider and deeper, to help snow and water pass through more easily. The rubber is also different. The compound used in winter tyres has more natural rubber and silica, so they don’t harden as much in cold weather.
Are Winter Tyres Worthwhile?
The difference in tread and rubber offer some important benefits in cold weather, such as better grip and stopping distances. However, this must be balanced against the cost of changing tyres in summer and winter and the need to store the second set out of season.
One school of thoughts says that the infrequency of snowy days in the UK negates the need for winter tyres, although they still perform better in colder temperatures whether there is snow on the ground or not. Your location also matters: if you live and work in a busy city, the roads will usually be relatively clear and gritted even in the most severe snowfall. In rural areas, you may find yourself snowed in more often.
Other alternatives to winter tyres
If you decide against cold weather tyres there are other options: snow chains and snow socks are reusable and relatively affordable alternatives.
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