Driving during winter is no joke, especially if you live in an area with harsh weather conditions. Winter tires are specifically designed to provide drivers with better traction and control on icy and snowy roads.
But what if you’re wondering whether you can use winter tires all year round? Is it safe? In this article, we’ll explore the pros and cons of driving on winter tires year-round and help you make an informed decision.
Am I Able to Drive on My Winter Tires All Year Round?
Technically speaking, you can drive on winter tires all year round. However, it’s not recommended for several reasons. Winter tires are made from softer rubber than all-season or summer tires, which makes them better suited for cold temperatures.
When the weather gets warmer, the rubber in winter tires can become too soft, leading to reduced handling and increased wear and tear.
Winter tires also have deeper and more aggressive tread patterns, which are designed to provide better traction on snowy and icy roads. However, these tread patterns can also be noisy and can cause increased road noise and reduced fuel economy when driving on dry roads.
Is it Safe to Drive on Winter Tires All Year Round?
Driving on winter tires all year round can be safe if you live in an area with mild weather conditions. However, if you live in an area with extreme temperatures or severe weather conditions, driving on winter tires year-round can be dangerous.
When the weather gets too warm, the softer rubber in winter tires can become too pliant, reducing their grip on the road. This can cause your car to slide or skid, which can lead to accidents. Winter tires also have deeper treads, which can lead to hydroplaning on wet roads.
Furthermore, winter tires are not designed to handle high speeds on dry roads, and using them year-round can increase the risk of blowouts and other tire-related issues.
Pros and Cons of Driving on Winter Tires All Year Round
Here are some pros and cons of using winter tires year-round:
- Better traction on snowy and icy roads
- Safer driving in winter conditions
- Longer lifespan than all-season tires (if used only during winter months)
- Reduced handling and increased wear and tear on warmer roads
- Increased road noise and reduced fuel economy on dry roads
- Higher cost than all-season or summer tires
Alternatives to Driving on Winter Tires Year-Round
If you want to avoid the hassle of switching between winter and all-season tires every year, there are some alternatives you can consider:
- All-Season Tires: All-season tires are designed to provide good traction in all weather conditions, including light snow and rain. While they may not provide the same level of traction as winter tires on snowy or icy roads, they offer better handling and performance on dry roads.
- All-Weather Tires: All-weather tires are a hybrid between all-season and winter tires. They offer good traction in both wet and dry conditions, as well as light snow and ice. While they may not provide the same level of traction as dedicated winter tires on snowy or icy roads, they offer better handling and performance than all-season tires.
It’s important to keep in mind that these types of tires work best in the winter on all-wheel or front-wheel drive vehicles. Rear-wheel drive cars will struggle in the snow without proper snow tires.
The Wrap Up
While you technically can drive on winter tires all year round, it’s not recommended due to reduced handling, increased wear and tear, and reduced fuel economy on dry roads.
Additionally, driving on winter tires year-round can be dangerous in extreme temperatures or severe weather conditions.
If you live in an area with mild weather conditions, using winter tires year-round can be safe, but it’s important to keep in mind the downsides and possible decrease in safety.
Tire Service at Matson Point S
With the hot summers in Utah, changing out your winter tires for ones suitable for summer driving should be at the top of your to-do list.
Luckily, Matson Point S in Riverton, Utah is your resource for a wide variety of tire choices at a fair price. Our service advisors will help you decide which tire brand, type, and size is best for your vehicle, and then get them installed by our expert technicians.
Call or schedule an appointment online to secure a tire appointment with our friendly team!