CAN I USE MY WINTER TIRES DURING THE SUMMER MONTHS?
A question we commonly get from our customers around this time of year is “Can I use my winter tires during the summer season?” Although it can be inconvenient to switch your tires with the seasons, the consequences of keeping your winter tires on all year long are simply just not worth it.
If you live around Chicago, or an area with a rather mild winter season, You may be tempted to keep your winter tires on all year as a way to save yourself the time and hassle of switching them to a pair of all-season or summer tires every few months.
However, winter tires are unique and are designed specifically to maintain traction in snowy and icy conditions. They are not recommended for year-round use.
Winter tires are meant to remain flexible in the cold. In the summer heat, the deeper treads and flexible rubber will be sure to wear more quickly, later compromising your handling and maneuverability and your safety on the road.
Winter tires are also meant to be driven at generally lower speeds to deal with slush and ice. They will not give you the smoothest ride when taking a road trip up the 94 to Wisconsin this summer.
WHEN SHOULD I CHANGE MY WINTER TIRES?
Unless otherwise specified by a technician or an owner’s manual, people generally put their winter tires in storage once the weather is hitting temperatures around 45º F. Conversely, those winter tires go back on your can when temperatures start dipping below 45º F in the later fall.
If you live near Chicago or an area where temperatures tend to change dramatically in a short period of time, you may consider holding off for a few more weeks. A little extra driving in your winter tires won’t hurt too much. Just be sure to change them out when you know the time is right!
Lastly, if you’re one of those people who doesn’t like changing their tires twice a year, consider all-season tires with WeatherGrip technology, which are built to help keep you and your car in control no matter the weather.
Regardless of when you decide to switch from winter tires to summer or all-season tires, it’s crucial that you do. Just like we prepare our cars to handle the elements of cold, snow, and ice in the winter, we have to also prepare our cars to hit the road at their best in the summertime.
Come in to HEART Certified Auto Care to get your vehicle ready for the road ahead this season! We will be sure to take good care of your car and great care of you!