Jump to navigation

The Right Tires for Winter Driving

from Meridian Insurance
RSS

Jan 14, 2015

It's easy to forget about your tires when it comes to vehicle safety. But with winter weather already in many parts of the country, tires are an important aspect you should keep in mind.

Your tires can be the difference between a safe trip and a disastrous one, whether you're driving a routine daily route or are headed to the mountains for some fun on the slopes. This winter tire guide will help you choose the best style of tires for your needs – and help you maintain them properly.

Are winter tires for you?
Winter tires are specially designed to provide the best traction and handling in ice, snow and cold-weather conditions. If you live in an area where temperatures regularly drop below 45 degrees Fahrenheit, it's a good idea to get a set. And note that we said "a set" – using only two winter tires instead of four can create handling issues caused by mismatched traction between the front and rear.

How are they different from all-season tires?
Winter tires have greater tread depth and use siping (slits in the tread) to increase the number of edges that are in contact with the road. They are also made using rubber compounds that stay soft when the weather gets cold, which helps to provide better traction.

What kind of winter tires is best?
There are two main categories: performance winter tires, for light snow and ice, and studless snow and ice tires, which are for severe weather conditions. The latter is the best tire for deep snow and heavy ice, says auto site Edmunds.com, unless studded tires are allowed in your area. But, while studded tires provide excellent traction on ice, you can likely get the same benefits by using chains, when necessary. And, your chains won't cause damage to the roadway like studs do, either.

How do I maintain them?
At any time of the year, tires require regular monitoring and maintenance for the best performance. But, when you're counting on them to get you through snow and ice, tire maintenance is even more important. Here are two important things to check regularly:

  • Pressure: Your tire pressure should be checked once a week to insure you aren't under- or over-inflated. In winter conditions, under-inflated tires increase your risk of having a blowout, and over-inflated tires can result in your car having virtually no traction.
  • Tread: Check your tread regularly using the "Lincoln test." Insert a penny into the groove of the tire, with the top of Lincoln's head going in first. Can you see only some of his hair? The tire has enough tread. If you see all of his hair, however, you need new tires immediately. Of course, if you're iffy on whether your tires are up for winter weather, you might just consider replacing them now – after all, the bare minimum isn't a good option unless the roads are bare, too.

As the old Michelin advertising slogan goes, "So much is riding on your tires." Take that to heart this winter, and you won't be left out in the cold.

Contact Us!
At Meridian Insurance, we can work with you to make sure you've got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable.

Call us at 937-567-8900 or send us a note at . We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what's important to you is protected!

Reposted with permission from the original author, Safeco Insurance.

One Article Comment

Nathan Johnson

I grew up in a hot and dry area of the country and never had to worry about winter tires. However, I recently moved to a place that gets lots of snow every winter. I have been questioning whether I need to get winter tires, but I like your guideline of regular 45 degrees or below. With that in mind, I definitely need to look into getting some winter tires before next winter rolls around. Thanks for the info!


Leave a Comment


(Do not fill out this field, or your comment will be ignored. This field is here to help us protect against automated (spam) comments.

Your comment will show up once it has been reviewed.



More articles related to…


Bookmark our mobile site visit m.mymeridianinsurance.com

Information you need, when and where you need it most. More »

Our Insurance Companies

Safeco Insurance

Meridian Insurance

Our locations:

7601 Paragon Rd Ste 203
Dayton, Ohio 45459

7800 E Kemper Rd, Suite 105
Cincinnati, Ohio 45249

800 S Gay St, Suite 700
Knoxville, Tennessee 37929

Areas we serve: Ohio, Arizona, Tennessee, Kentucky and Indiana

Jump to navigation
800-207-7079
Mon-Fri 8AM-5PM

© 2017 Meridian Insurance