Most of us know someone who decided to keep their winter tires on even when the snow had stopped falling. For some, it was because they couldn’t afford summer tires while for others, it was because their winter tires were worn out and they figured they wouldn’t need them when the snow came around next year. Others, they simply forgot to have their summer tires put on and then decided it was too late.
Regardless of the reason, it’s never a good idea to keep your winter tires on when summer rolls around. Here are a few reasons why.
To understand why it’s not a good idea to keep your winter tires on your vehicle year round, we need to firstly understand what makes a winter tire work in… well… winter. Unlike summer or all-season tires, winter tires are built with a rubber compound that will stay flexible even when the temperature drops. That’s very important if you want to brake on ice and snow, but it also means that the tire will become very soft when the temperature rises.
That means that when it’s hot outside, the tire will feel like it’s made of butter and overall braking distances will increase quite dramatically.
Also, a tire thread on a summer tire is composed of very wide grooves which are used to evacuate snow. If the road is wet however, these grooves tend to make the car feel unstable and the risk of aquaplaning can increase dramatically.
Finally, it should be noted that winter tires on a dry road are often quite noisy which means than any long drive can quickly become uncomfortable for you and your passengers.
In the end, it’s always a better idea to put four season tires on your vehicle and get rid of your winter tires as soon as the temperature starts to rise above 10 degrees on a regular basis.
Thanks to Kentville Mazda for their help with this article.