Do you fit winter tyres as soon as the temperature drops or are you amongst the majority that does not give winter tyres a second thought, apart from maybe believing that they are an unnecessary expenditure?
Manufacturers estimate that only five per cent of drivers are planning on using winter tyres in the cold weather this year, which is itself an increase from the previous three per cent! This is because there is a dual misconception in the UK, firstly that British weather is never bad enough to justify investing in a whole second set of tyres and secondly that only well-off drivers can afford to buy a second set of tyres for their vehicle while the ‘current’ set is still in reasonable condition.
Facts about Winter Tyres
Winter tyres tend to be cheaper than summer tyres, and last well in cold weather because that is what they are designed for, while summer tyres may become brittle and more prone to damage when used in freezing weather. Buying a set of winter tyres does not represent ‘extra’ expense, rather it is a reshuffling of when you spend money on tyres. Using each set for only six months of the year means that both sets will last twice as long as tyres that are used year round.
Do, however, make sure that you know how to store the unused set of tyres correctly as they can dry out and perish if simply left exposed to the elements. With proper care you can drive safely for longer using the appropriate tyre for the season without incurring any extra expense! One should also keep emergency kit from Firstaid4less and make your car run smoothly over the road.
DO We Need Winter Tyres Here?
As we have seen over the last few years, British winters certainly can be bad enough to justify the use of snow tyres. Winter tyres have a higher proportion of natural rubber in them, making them softer and better able to grip the road, as well as having deeper, more complex tread patterns that enable the tyres to grip even icy roads.
Notwithstanding having your summer tyres last longer when you use a set of winter tyres, consider the costs associated with you having an accident on an icy road; let us say, you try to brake, the car slides helplessly over the slippery surface and you crash into the back of the vehicle in front, spin gently and have someone coming the other way bump into you, setting off the air bags. You are slightly injured – not seriously enough for a hospital stay, but enough so that you have to be off work for a couple of weeks. Not only are you in pain and out of funds (albeit temporarily) you also have the hassle and expense of finding a mechanic to collect your car from the roadside and take it back to his or her workshop for repairs – which are never cheap. Having totted up all those expenses, now compare them to a set of winter tyres that will last you three or even four years, ensuring that you are one of the safest drivers on the road in winter…
Where Can I Get Some?
You can find winter tyres in stock at most tyre dealers, but why not go online and check out sites like point-s.co.uk which can help you to source the perfect winter tyres for your vehicle model?
One common misconception is that winter tyres need snow and ice and subzero temperatures to be effective. This is absolutely not the case and most winter tyres work better than summer tyres from about seven degrees centigrade. This means that you can put your winter tyres on in autumn and leave them on until the early spring, saving a great deal of wear and tear on your summer tyres!
My name is James Smith. I believe that frugality is a key to success, but not at the expense of risking your life. So change your car tyres and keep yourself safe on the road in adverse conditions.
Image by hinnamsaisuy, http://www.freedigitalphotos.net