For obvious safety reasons, the authorities and professionals in the tire industry recommend abandoning standard tires in favor of snow tires or even 4-season tires when temperatures drop below 7 ° C. And for a good reason, the rubber of standard tires tends to harden with the cold, thus reducing their efficiency, but also and above all their grip on the ground. But the question then arises: should we use snow tires or all-season tires in winter? Find some answers in this article.
To drive in complete safety during the cold season, there are certified “winter” tires that many people simply call snow tires.
Unlike other European countries, changing your tires for winter tire bands is not yet compulsory across the country. Indeed, having tires suitable for snow is only compulsory in France in certain areas deemed to be at risk. This is particularly the case in mountainous regions. It can cost up to 40% more than a standard tire; a snow tire differs by its much softer compound, which can remain flexible even when temperatures are at their lowest. It also has deeper grooves that allow the better evacuation of water, mud, and snow, which optimizes its grip. Its tread also has sipes that grip better on a snowy or icy road and which consequently offers better traction in winter conditions.
There Are Mainly Two Types Of Winter Certified Tires:
- Alpine winter tires: they are designed for the winter conditions of Western Europe and thus adapt perfectly to cold, wet and snowy roads.
- Nordic tires: they are designed to withstand the harshest winters where temperatures can reach -40 ° C and are suitable for often icy roads. These are real snow tires.
4 Season Tires
As the name suggests, all-season tires are tires that can be used all year round, whether it’s hot or cold. These are hybrid pneumatic bands with a more versatile operating range than standard tires and certified winter tires. This type of tire is at ease both at -10 ° C to 30 ° C.
They have the advantage of being much quieter and more efficient than winter tires at temperatures above 7 ° C, that is to say on dry and wet roads. However, although they offer adequate safety and mobility below these temperatures, they still perform less well than winter tires when it comes to driving in very cold conditions. But by opting for all-season tires, you will be financially a winner. Indeed, it will come back to you much cheaper than buying summer tires and winter tires. In addition, it will simplify your life because you will not have to change tires when the season changes.
The choice of tires will therefore depend mainly on your budget as well as the region where you live.