Having a car is your link to the open road. You can get around town and across the country as long as you have a vehicle to take you there. Buying a new car will provide worry-free travel for years as long as you keep up on regular maintenance. Still, over time you will need to repair and replace critical components. Among these are your tires.
When it’s time to get new tires, you need to assess what your needs are. Is it your family car that you commute around the city or a fun vehicle you drive to the ski slopes in? Are you worried about extreme road and weather conditions, or do you want flashy tires to cruise around in?
There are lots of choices to make when buying new tires. Let’s go over what to look for.
Most vehicles today are running on all-season tires. They are designed to provide safe year-round driving in all weather conditions. You get good traction and handling and the ability to maneuver pretty well in the snow. For most drivers, these tires are acceptable, and they should be fine for most conditions.
If you are looking for better performance in winter weather conditions, you should consider snow tires. There are dedicated tires you bring out for winter conditions. Their primary purpose is to give you superior handling in snowy conditions, but they don’t work that great on clear roads when the snow melts. That’s when you change over to summer tires. These tires are made for dry and wet traction, ideal for any season outside of winter.
If you like to get the best performance during the seasons and don’t mind the expense of the second set of tires, then get a set of winter tires. Otherwise, buy high-quality all-season tires and keep them on permanently.
When buying new tires, you want them to last as long as possible. You can choose tires based on the warranty the manufacturer offers to make sure they last as long as they are supposed to. Most manufacturers offer a tread warranty as well as defer protection.
If you have a warranty and your tires wear out faster than promised, you can take them back for replacement. They will make sure you have rotated them regularly, and the tires were properly inflated. Without the warranty, you may be out of luck. If you are picking tires based on their warranty, read it carefully and follow it meticulously.
Match Your Needs
When you bought your vehicle, it came with tires. You are used to their performance, but you should get ones that match your driving habits when it’s time for new tires.
Do you drive aggressively at higher speeds? Do you go off-road? Think about everyday situations that you will be putting your tires through. If you are planning on towing a trailer vs just light driving, it should be a factor in picking the right tire for the situation. Consult with a tire expert and explain what type of driving you will be doing so they can match the tires to your specific needs.
New or Used
If you need to replace a tire, you don’t have to buy a brand new one. Why not buy a good quality used tire instead? This makes sense when you are only replacing one due to damage. Getting one to match the age of the other tires will allow them to age together. When it’s time, you can replace 2 or 4 altogether.
Cost is a factor as well, and you can get a big discount on tires that may only have a small amount of wear on them. If you are replacing all your tires, then new ones are a great option. It does cost more, but you will start with a clean slate and know how much life the new one will give you.
Read The Sidewall
Your best bet is trying to match the type of tires your car came with. This is what the manufacturer recommended. Understanding what tires you are getting is important, so educate yourself on reading the tire itself.
The tire information is right on the side and will include:
- Load Index
- Speed Rating
- Treadwear grade
- Traction and Temperature Scores
- Manufacturer’s Date Code
Ultimately, the quality of your ride will come down to the tires you choose to buy. You need to make sure your new tires will best fit your needs both in safety, handling and performance. You also want them to look good. Do your research and find a dealer willing to explain all the different options you can choose, and then you will be assured that you will have great tires to take you down the road of life.