Warmer sun and longer days are finally here.
As Spring starts to wind up, so does the wet and rainy weather that often comes with it. Spring is also when drivers ditch their winter tires in favor of more fuel-efficient all-season tires. Wet roads may not seem as dangerous as ice and snow, but they can be. Drivers should use the traditional tire swap as a chance to check the tread on their all-season tires. Good, deep treads are essential for wet traction. As a tire ages and wears, its ability to perform in wet weather decreases. Don’t rely on your winter tires to get you through the rainy season. Spring weather is warm enough to wear down the tread quickly, shortening the winter tire’s useful life.
It’s important to look closely at a tire’s wet traction performance. Poorly designed tread, more common in bargain level tires, doesn’t clear water away effectively. Tires work best when rubber is in direct contact with the road. When water gets in the way, sudden traction loss occurs. This is called hydroplaning, and while it creates some fun to watch skid pad videos, it’s dangerous in real-world driving. Tire treads should be designed to force water out and away from the tires. This keeps rubber in contact with the road in even the heaviest of Spring showers. Look for all season tires that feature hydroplaning resistance in their tread design.
Here are three wet-weather tires that offer excellent usability in soggy conditions:
The most visually obvious example of hydroplane resistive design is featured on the Goodyear Assurance TripleTred. These all-season tires have some of the best wet weather traction reported by drivers. Directional grooves in the tire tread help push water out, maintaining solid contact with the road. As a tire, the Assurance TripleTred is unique, featuring a tread design specifically targeted not only at wet traction but dry and even cold weather performance as well. This premium tire is an excellent choice for cars, sedans and minivan owners.
Another highly rated tire is the Michelin Premier A/S, which I’ve used personally in the past and have recommended many times to my family and friends. This tire is a new design from the folks at Michelin, and features many of the same water channeling tread designs other good wet traction all-seasons do. What sets the Premier apart, however, is how well the tread is designed to wear. Michelin claims the Premier A/S will maintain better than new wet weather traction, even as the treads wear out. Using a unique channel design that actually widens as the tire wears, you can expect good hydroplaning resistance long into the life of these tires. Probably one of the most expensive tire options for your car, SUV or minivan, the Premier A/S is the gold standard for all-season tires.
Budget-conscious tire buyers don’t need to worry about sacrificing wet weather traction for a price. General Tire offers a standard all-season tire which consistently performs among the best. Altimax RT43 all-season tires often produce the same test results as tires which cost much more, when comparing wet weather traction. Their new silica tread compound also reduces road noise and vibration, while extending the life of the tire. I’ve also used this tire on my personal car and was very happy with its performance.
If you’re shopping for new tires, be sure to do your research at TireReviewsandMore.com
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