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You might want to drive all year long on winter tires to save money, time or both, but that you shouldn’t do it.
Tire maker Nokian Tyres is developing a winter tire that features retractable studs.
With the Midwest and eastern states smothered in snow and accosted by abnormally frigid temperatures, this winter has been uncommonly excruciating for people in the Northern U.S. Given the brutal weather, tires are a surprisingly appropriate subject for discussion.
Chaos ensues at local tire shops when the snow belt states get their first flurries of the season. Like an animal instinct, the first sign of fluffy white flakes has people running to the garage, stuffing the family hauler with dusty winter rubber and racing off to the installation shop. Problem is, by then it’s already too late.
Winter tires should be installed well in advance of the first snowfall. Regardless of whether they are snow tires, ice tires or winter performance tires, all cold weather rubber is designed for more than just messy weather. These tires feature rubber compound and tread designs that are created to help maintain traction in colder weather even if the roads are clear and dry.
Nitto Motivo UHP All-Season Tire Test
Nitto Tires makes its presence known in the enthusiast community, interacting with motorsport fans and weekend warriors. However, the company now feels it’s time to break ground with consumers by offering more mainstream products. Working closely with its enthusiast base, Nitto has managed to deliver a pair of new tires, the first designed to be a solid replacement for your OEM all-seasons and the second to be your savior in the snow.
The winter season is underway, and many drivers still aren’t sure which tires are right for them. Fortunately, Consumer Reports has gone and tested just about every winter-tire available, and have ranked them from best to worst.
Winter is almost here and there’s plenty to do in order to ensure you have a safe and enjoyable drive in the snow and ice. The drop in temperatures can affect a number of characteristics in your vehicle, from handling, visibility and durability. Here are a few steps you can take to ‘winterize’ your ride.
Don't rely on All-Season Tires in Snow and Ice
With the temperatures dropping and snow falling, winter tires can’t be ignored as an important part of staying safe in slippery conditions.
As the seasons begin to change and the temperatures drop, many motorists will be on the hunt for winter tires, or even just a set of new all-seasons. Well in advance of the snow, Consumer Reports has released a list of the best new all-season and winter tires to meet different traction needs with both Michelin and Continental scoring highly.
Motorists in the UK are being hit with a one-two punch, after a shortage of winter tires left drivers scrambling to find appropriate tires for the chilly conditions.
Strong demand for winter tires due to last winter’s heavy snowfall has led to a shortage of snow tires. Even with a 400 percent increase in deliveries to the UK, supplies look to be sold out through January.
Meanwhile, drivers are reporting that some insurers are raising premiums on vehicles with winter tires, due to their install being considered a “modification”. Insurers seem to be ambivalent regarding the proven safety benefits of winter tires, and motorists are understandably outraged.
[Source: Auto Express]
Spring means a lot of things. Cleaning your home from top to bottom. Putting the parkas away until the next snow fall. Switching over from the furnace to air conditioning. But one thing you may not have thought of is taking off your winter tires and putting on the all-seasons.
You may be tempted to keep your snows on all year long, but it’s not a good idea. Winter tires wear out more quickly than their all-season counterparts, and they don’t stop as short on dry and wet surfaces. Mark it on your calendar and take them off once the snow has melted for good.
If you’re attempting to do the job yourself, keep these tips in mind:
- It’s been a long winter, so before you install the all-seasons, clean off as much of the gunk and loose corrosion that’s been built-up on the mating surfaces of the wheel hub and wheel. While you’re at it, clean off the wheel studs or bolts as well.
- Stubborn nut or bolt should be replaced, as you won’t get much clamping force when you reuse damaged nuts or bolts.
- It’s time install the tire. Hand tighten the nuts or bolts and pull out your vehicle owner’s manual on how to do it right (usually in a star pattern). You’ll tighten one, then the second one opposite to the first; and so on. Use the car’s lug wrench to tighten them all firmly in place using this pattern.
- Remove the car jack and use a torque wrench to tighten the wheels to the recommend value (you’ll find this information in most new car manuals or consult your car dealer). You can pick up a quality torque wrench from any auto parts store. Tighten the wheels in the star pattern described in the third step.
- Re-torque the wheels again after taking your car out for a short spin. You’re done!
[Source: Consumer Reports]