Winter Tires: A Comprehensive Guide (2022)

Winter Tires

It’s that time of year again – the cold weather is settling in and it’s time to start thinking about winter tires.

If you’re like most people, you may be wondering what all the fuss is about. Aren’t all tires created equal? The answer is no – there is a big difference between regular tires and winter tires. In this comprehensive guide, we will discuss everything you need to know about winter tires!

‍What are Winter Tires?

Winter tires are designed specifically for cold weather and icy conditions. They are made from a different type of rubber compound that remains flexible in freezing temperatures

This helps to improve traction on slick surfaces. Winter tires also have deeper tread than regular tires, which helps to grip the road better in snowy or slushy conditions.

‍Why Do I Need Winter Tires?

If you live in an area that experiences cold weather and snowy conditions, winter tires are a must. 

Even if you don’t plan on driving in the snow, winter tires can still be beneficial. That’s because they provide better traction and handling on cold, dry pavement. This can help to improve your safety on the roadways.

‍How Do I Choose the Right Winter Tires?

There are a few things to keep in mind when choosing winter tires.

First, you’ll need to decide on the right size. You can find this information in your vehicle’s owner’s manual or on the placard located on the driver’s side door jamb.

Next, you’ll need to decide on the right tread pattern. If you’re unsure of what to choose, ask a professional for help.

Finally, you’ll need to decide on the right tire compound. Again, if you’re unsure of what to choose, ask a professional for help.

Best Winter Tire
Hankook Winter i*cept Evo2
8.9/10We Try Tires Score
  • Highest rated winter tires
  • Quiet and more comfortable than rivals
  • Improved handling and steering response
  • Long life and durable performance
  • Cheaper than rivals

‍When Should I Install Winter Tires?

Ideally, you should install winter tires before the first snowfall. This will help to ensure that your vehicle is ready for winter weather conditions. If you wait until after the first snowfall, you may be putting yourself at risk. 

To be more specific, we recommend switching to your winter tires once the temperature dips below 45 degrees.

‍How Do I Care for Winter Tires?

Caring for winter tires is important if you want them to last. First, you’ll need to clean them regularly. This helps to remove any built-up grime or salt which can damage the softer rubber. 

Second, you’ll need to inspect them regularly for any damage. If you notice any cracks or splits, it’s time to replace your tires.

Third, you’ll need to store them properly when not in use as you shouldn’t use winter tires out of season. This helps to protect them from the elements and prolong their lifespan.

What makes winter tires different?

The main difference between winter tires and regular tires is the type of rubber compound used. Winter tires are made from a different type of rubber compound that remains flexible in freezing temperatures. 

This helps to improve traction on slick surfaces. Winter tires also have deeper tread than regular tires, which helps to grip the road better in snowy or slushy conditions.‍

But this softer rubber isn’t great for driving long term in warm weather so it’s important to remember to take them off once the temperature starts to rise.

Why Can’t You Use Winter Tires in Summer?

You cannot use winter tires during summer because the rubber compound will degrade much faster in warm temperatures. This can cause the tires to become hard and brittle, which can lead to a loss of traction. 

Additionally, the deeper tread on winter tires can cause increased wear on hot pavement.

Why Can’t You Use Summer Tires in Winter?

You shouldn’t use summer tires during winter because they are not designed for cold weather conditions. The rubber compound in summer tires will harden and become brittle in freezing temperatures, which can lead to a loss of traction. 

Additionally, the shallower tread on summer tires can cause decreased grip on icy or snow-covered roads.

Do I Need Winter Tires When I Have Off-Road Tires?

Yes, you do need winter tires when you have off-road tires. Off-road tires are designed for use in mud, sand, and other off-road conditions. They are not designed for use in snow or on icy roads

Additionally, the tread on off-road tires can cause increased wear on hot pavement.

What are Studded Winter Tires?

Studded winter tires are a type of winter tire that is outfitted with metal studs. These studs help to improve traction on icy or snow-covered roads. 

However, they can also cause increased wear on hot pavement and studded winter tires are not legal in all states, so be sure to check your state’s requirements.

Are Studded Tires Better Than Studless Winter Tires?

Traditionally you could make the argument that studded tires could provide better traction and grip in harsh conditions which made them the superior option.

However, the modern winter tire has made huge leaps forward in design and you likely won’t find a winter tire that can’t match the traction performance of studded tires. So, it’s unlikely you’ll need to get a studded tire these days.

How Often Do I Need To Check Pressure for Winter Tires?

You should check the pressure of your winter tires at least every two weeks. This helps to ensure that they are properly inflated and performing at their best. Additionally, you should check the pressure of your tires before each long trip as winter tires can look fine even when they are a bit deflated.

Tires typically lose pressure quicker when in cold temperatures so it’s important to check your pressure regularly.

What Is The Optimal Tire Pressure for Winter Tires?

The optimal tire pressure for winter tires varies depending on the make and model of the tire. However, most winter tires should be inflated to between 30 and 35 PSI.

What Speed Can I Drive With My Winter Tires?

The speed limit for winter tires is the same as the speed limit for regular tires. However, you should always drive at a safe speed for the conditions.

Why Do Tire Sizes Get Smaller For Winter Tires?

The size of winter tires is usually smaller than the size of regular tires because they are designed for use in snow and icy conditions. The smaller size and ratio of the tire helps to improve traction on slick surfaces. The larger sidewall also helps to protect the rim from damage.

Additionally, the smaller size helps to reduce the risk of getting stuck in snow drifts.

Can I Use Winter Tires On My Front Wheel, All-Wheel or Rear Wheel Drive Vehicle?

Yes, you can use winter tires on your front wheel drive vehicle, all-wheel or rear wheel drive vehicle. Winter tires are designed for use on all types of vehicles.

I Have a Spare Tire, Do I Need to Get a New One for Winter?

Yes, we recommend that you get a new spare tire for winter. This is because the spare tire is typically smaller than the regular tires to save space inside the vehicle and is only designed to be used temporarily and not in winter conditions. This is sometimes also known as a donut or space saver tire.

If you do have a full size spare tire in your vehicle, it is important to make sure to replace this with an appropriate tire for when the seasons change. In the winter, make sure to replace your spare tire with a winter tire.

What is the M+S Rating on Winter Tires?

The M+S rating on winter tires stands for mud and snow. This rating indicates that the tire is designed for use in both mud and snow. 

However, it’s important to note that this doesn’t necessarily mean it passed any additional tests. Rather, this is just something the manufacturer may add.

How to Select the Correct Size for My Winter Tires?

When selecting the correct size for your winter tires, you should first consult your owner’s manual. 

Your owner’s manual will have the specific tire size that is recommended for your vehicle. Alternatively, you can also contact a local tire dealer for assistance.

When should you remove your winter tires?

We recommend that you remove your winter tires once the temperature rises above 45 degrees Fahrenheit on a consistent basis.

Where Do I Store My Winter Tires?

When storing your winter tires out of season, it’s important to keep them in a cool, dry place. This helps to prevent the tires from cracking or drying out. Additionally, you should avoid storing your winter tires in direct sunlight.

How Much Do Winter Tires Cost?

The cost of winter tires varies depending on the make and model of the tire. However, most winter tires typically range in price from $150 to $200.

Will My Car Consume More Fuel With Winter Tires?

No, your car will not consume more fuel with winter tires. Winter tires are designed to be just as fuel-efficient as regular tires.

Use of Tire Chains in Winter

When driving in winter weather conditions, it’s important to be prepared for anything. 

One of the things you should have in your car is a set of tire chains. Tire chains can be used in a variety of situations, including when you get stuck in snow, when you’re driving on ice, or when you’re going up a hill.

How to Properly Install Winter Tires

Installing winter tires is a fairly simple process that can be done at home with the proper tools. You will need a jack, a lug wrench, and an impact wrench.

First, you’ll want to loosen the lug nuts on your wheels with the lug wrench. Next, use the jack to lift up your car. Once your car is lifted, remove the lug nuts and then the wheels. Finally, put the winter tires on and tighten the lug nuts.

It’s important to make sure that the lug nuts are tightened properly so that they don’t come loose while you’re driving.

How Long Do Winter Tires Last?

Typically a set of winter tires should be able to last just as long as summer tires as long as they’re properly maintained. However, due to the harsher conditions that winter tires are subjected to, it’s not uncommon for them to only last for two or three seasons.

Once you’ve decided to switch back to summer tires, it’s important to inspect your winter tires for any damage. If you notice any cracks or cuts in the tread, it’s time to replace your tires.

How to Take Care of Your Winter Tires

Taking care of your winter tires is important if you want them to last for multiple seasons. One of the best ways to care for your tires is to keep them clean. You should regularly clean both the inside and outside of your tires with soap and water.

It’s also important to check the air pressure in your tires on a regular basis. Both under inflated and over inflated tires can cause problems while driving.

Finally, you should have your winter tires rotated every few months. This helps to ensure even wear and tear on all of the tires.

Can I Replace Just One Winter Tire If The Other Three Tires Are Fine?

Yes, you can replace just one winter tire if the others are still ok. However, you shouldn’t mix and match tire brands. All four of your tires should be the same make and model.

What’s the Best Way to Drive in Winter Conditions?

The best way to drive in winter conditions is to take your time. You should avoid sudden starts and stops, and you should give yourself plenty of time to brake.

You should also be aware of black ice, which is a thin layer of ice that can form on roads. Black ice is often difficult to see, so it’s important to be cautious when driving in areas where it might form.

Winter driving can be tricky, but as long as you take your time and use caution, you should be able to get where you’re going without any problems.

Are There Any Motorcycle Snow Tires?

Yes, there absolutely are motorcycle snow tires! Just like with cars, it’s important to make sure that your motorcycle is properly equipped for winter weather conditions.

Snow tires for motorcycles typically cost between $50 and $150 per tire. They’re available in a variety of sizes to fit most motorcycles.


Hopefully now you have a better understanding about what winter tires are and why you need them. They are pretty much an essential if you drive in colder areas that get a lot of snow and ice. They provide wonderful traction and make tough driving conditions a breeze. 

If you’re looking at getting yourself a set of winter tires, be sure to check out our offer to get a great price on Goodyear tires.

We hope this article was helpful in your search for your next tire purchase. If you have any questions then please leave a comment below or get in touch via email or through social media and we will read and respond to every comment, email or question. Thanks for reading!

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