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5 Really Important Differences Between All-Season and Winter Tires

When the weather changes from summer to winter, you change your clothes and shoes right? The same can be said for your car or truck. Most importantly paying attention where the rubber hits the road might just save your life. Read over these crucial few items that explain why winter tires are so important.

Winter Road Conditions

I’ve got high quality all-season tires, they should be just fine, right? Wrong!

This is a common misconception about this type of tire rating. All season, really means 3 season, not including winter. And here are 6 reasons why.

  • Rubber Compound – In the summer the roads are warmer and so in order to keep the tread life within a respectable range, the tire compound is much harder. The heat from the road doesn’t break down the tread quite as easily while maintaining a good amount of traction in mild conditions. In the winter, road conditions cool down considerably and the colder, sometimes icy road conditions require a tire with a softer tread compound. With the colder temperatures, these tires will last longer with a softer rubber. This is also why you should never run your winter tires in the summer, as the softer rubber will wear down quite quickly on the hot pavement.
  • Master of None – All season tires are designed to be okay across a wide range of conditions. While this may seem okay on the surface, they’re not great and won’t perform when you most need them in a slushy or heavy rain condition. They just don’t have the traction and shouldn’t be expected to perform well under 7 degrees celsius. A winter tire can deliver up to 50% MORE traction in adverse conditions than an all season tread. Think about it.
  • ABS & Traction Control are No Help – While ABS or traction control may sound like it should help you in winter conditions, it’s only as good as the traction of the tread. ABS detects slip and unloads the throttle or pulses the brakes. The only thing that will improve traction in this case is a better set of tires.
  • Front and Rear Sets – Mixing and matching sets of tires can be a dangerous play. Tire treads are engineered to work together and no 2 are alike. Mixing tread patterns can lead to erratic handling and most importantly, inconsistent braking and traction. One set could work well in slushy conditions while the other might not and could cause a very dangerous situation in an emergency stop. Don’t give your vehicle a split-personality with different tread types.
  • All-Season Vs All-Weather – As a final thought, all-season and all-weather tires are NOT of the same breed. All-season tires should be referred to as 3-season only since they are really not designed to handle the cold. All-weather tires are engineered to withstand more of the cold weather conditions that a mild winter can toss onto the road like cold weather, rain, light snow and slush. To put it mildly, all weather tires do offer some winter safety and reliability, while all season tires don’t.

If your area is expected to see snow, then you absolutely must go for a proper set of winter tires. Look for this symbol on the side to be sure.

Winter Tire Symbol

Galaxy Motors Tires

All year long, as we purchase cars out-of-province, we replace any winters tires with all-season or summer tires. This causes us to have a great collection of used winter tires at our Colwood dealership that start at $39 each.

Used winter tires for cars and trucks

Employee Pricing on Tires in December

Happy Holidays to all of our valued customers! Galaxy Motors is offering employee pricing on all tires for the month of December.

Come see us for savings of up to 25% per tire! (*Some conditions apply. Contact our service department for a quote.)

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