Essential winter tyre care tips

Gareth Herincx

19 hours ago
Auto Blog

With extreme weather just around the corner it’s more important than ever to make sure your tyes are in tip-top condition.

We’ve teamed up with Goodyear to help you stay safe on the roads over the winter with these five tips…

1) Check your pressures regularly
It’s important to regularly check your tyre pressures throughout the winter. Lower temperatures can cause tyre pressures to drop, meaning the contact patch will be larger and making it more difficult to gain traction on snow and ice. Always run your tyres to the manufacturer’s recommended PSI or BAR.

2) Tread carefully
Having adequate tread depth is essential, whatever the weather. However, when your tyres are trying to grip wet and icy roads, it’s even more important that they have suitable tread. The legal limit for minimum tread depth is 1.6mm, across three-quarters of the tread and around the entire circumference of the tyre. As well as helping your tyres grip the road more effectively throughout the winter months, regular checks to keep your tread above the legal limit can help to avoid three penalty points and a hefty fine.

3) Consider fitting winter or all-season tyres
Most cars are fitted with summer tyres as standard, as opposed to winter or all-season tyres like Goodyear’s Vector 4Seasons Gen-3. However, the compound on summer tyres remains hard in cold temperatures, whereas a winter or all-season tyre retains its pliability and moulds to the shape of the road to retain grip. As a result, the sipes in the tread design of a winter or all season tyre will grip to snowy and icy roads much more effectively. Most manufacturers will recommend using winter tyres in temperatures below 7°C.

4) Know your braking distances
If you’re using summer tyres in winter conditions, you will need to re-evaluate your braking distances. Research from the British Tyre Manufacturers Association (BTMA) shows that when braking on icy roads at 20mph, a car fitted with winter tyres will come to a rest after 57m, while summer tyres will keep going for as far as 68m. Regardless of what kind of tyres they’re using, it’s vital that drivers keep a safe distance from the vehicle in front.

5) How does the tyre look?
While you should carry out proven checks on your tyre pressures and tread, it’s also important to simply look for cosmetic damage. Look for rips, tears or bulges before setting off and make sure to check your pressure, especially if your car hasn’t moved for a few days.

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EV owners urged to choose correct replacement tyres

Home / Auto News / EV owners urged to choose correct replacement tyres

Gareth Herincx

2 days ago
Auto News

Owners of electric vehicles (EVs) should pay close attention to the tyres they choose when the originals need replacing, warns TyreSafe.

Increasingly, advises the UK road safety charity, tyres fitted are specifically designed for use on EVs and can be significantly different to the ‘normal’ tyres motorists are familiar with.

Fitting the wrong type of tyre could result in loss of range, extra noise, accelerated wear and the risk of failing while being driven, which could result in a serious incident.

TyreSafe has released detailed advice for EV owners in the ‘About Tyres’ section of its website, tyresafe.org.

Four reasons why correct EV tyres matter

There are a wide range of factors which are important to choosing the right tyre, which the vehicle manufacturer has already taken into account when fitting the originals at the factory.

  1. The vehicle’s weight is just one as it influences the amount of air pressure required to keep a tyre in its optimal shape along with the stiffness of its sidewall and even its centre section. EVs are well-known for being heavier than their petrol or diesel equivalents, so an owner must be aware of their tyre’s load rating when a replacement is needed as well as maintaining the recommended tyre pressure at all times.
  2. Another consideration is the impact tyre choice can have on an EV’s range, due to its ‘rolling resistance’. A tyre should have the least rolling resistance as possible, however, as always, a balance needs to be struck as grip is essential for safety when it comes to braking. Minimising rolling resistance while providing adequate grip seems like a contradictory requirement but this is a key performance characteristic for EVs to ensure maximum range.
  3. The tyre also needs to be robust as EVs produce maximum power from standing. This places high demands on the rubber compound, which needs to be of the right mixture of components and have the appropriate tread pattern to provide a lifespan comparable with petrol or diesel vehicles.
  4. The amount of noise the tyre produces as it travels over a road surface is yet another example of the possible adaptations which could make tyres for EVs different to those of a petrol or diesel vehicle. As EV motors produce very little noise, the quiet cabin environment is one of the big attractions of these cars, which could easily be ruined by the wrong choice of tyre.

“Tyres are an extremely sophisticated piece of technology, which we all too commonly take for granted,” said TyreSafe’s Stuart Jackson.

“Choosing a like-for-like tyre will allow EV owners to enjoy the full benefit of the electric car revolution and reduce the risks of an incident.”

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Gareth is a versatile journalist, copywriter and digital editor who’s worked across the media in newspapers, magazines, TV, teletext, radio and online. After long stints at the BBC, GMTV and ITV, he now specialises in motoring.

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