Thursday, 5 December 2013

What To Consider When Buying Winter Tyres

As the chill of winter begins to set in, we are beginning to think ahead to ice, snow and sleet. While snow is great fun for the children, allowing them to build snowmen, go to bogging and fling snow all other each other with shrieks of joy, it is not so pleasant for us adults, especially when we have to keep using our vehicles for work, shopping and generally getting around. Driving in adverse weather conditions is nerve-racking and dangerous, so reduce your risk of getting into trouble by switching to winter tyres as soon as the first frosts are forecast.

What are Winter Tyres ?

Winter tyres, more properly called ‘cold weather tyres’, are made differently to summer tyres, featuring a lot more grooves which work to increase the surface area of the tyre, providing a good deal more ‘grip’ on the road. Some winter tyres are designed to have the grooves and crevices fill with snow which can then grip onto lying snow, providing good traction. The composition of winter tyres, too, is different, making the tyres softer and more pliable, which means that they grip the road better.

How Do I Know a Winter Tyre From a Regular One?

When looking for winter tyres, be sure to look for the snowflake on a snow-capped mountain symbol on the sidewall of the tyre. Winter tyres perform well from temperatures as high as 7 degrees C, so you can start thinking about putting on your winter tyres in October or November, and leave them on until March – perhaps diarise it along with changing the clocks?

Where Can I Look for Winter Tyres?

Finding your winter tyres does not have to be a major chore. There are online sites that can help you find the right tyres for your vehicle with just the click of a mouse button. For example, have a look at the Point S website and you will quickly see how easily you choose winter tyres for your model of car!

What Else Do I Need?

Along with your winter tyres, make sure that you pack a winter car kit and keep it in your car throughout the winter. Once the weather turns very cold do not let your fuel tank fall below half, and ensure that your mobile is always charged before driving anywhere. For the car kit itself you should include a shovel and ice-scraper, a small but comprehensive first-aid kit (include a small selection of any medications that family members rely on, such as heart tablets and asthma inhalers, just in case you break down for a considerable period of time) and a thick warm blanket. Add a torch and batteries, but do not put the batteries into the torch until you want to use it, and do not forget warning signs, an emergency flare and booster cables too. Sand, salt or cat litter can help your vehicle grip the road after a skid. Some matches and candles cannot do any harm, but do make sure that you wrap them in waterproof fabric as matches readily absorb dampness from the air. Finally, stock up on high-calorie snack bars and packs of nuts and raisins; all small foodstuffs that will sustain and nourish you in cold weather.

Hopefully, with your new winter tyres you will have no need to ever use your winter car kit, but it is always better to have something that you never need than to need something you do not have! With your new tyres fitted and your emergency pack safely in the boot, you are sure to be ready for everything that winter throws your way!

Author Bio: My name is James Smith. I love to write about automotive industry, travelling, family & lifestyle.

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