Do You Need Winter Tires When the Temperature Drops below 7C?

Minit-Tune & Brake| Thursday, November 30, 2017

The temperatures are dropping fast throughout the country, but do you need those winter tires on your vehicle just yet? If you are still sporting your summer treads, you might notice your tires slip plenty but do not provide you with any traction; primarily as the ice forms on the roadway. All-season and summer tires are just not meant for Canadian winters; regardless of how good the traction is on those tires.

Therefore with temperatures starting to reach 7 degrees Celsius and below, winter tires are a must.

Winter tires

Here’s Why Winter Tires Matter

Did you know that the magic number where summer and all-season tires lose their effectiveness is 7 degrees Celsius? Right now, the temperatures in Vancouver and surrounding areas are hovering around that temperature point. Rubber compounds harden at this time of the year, and if you want your vehicle to have a firm grip on the roadway, you need to change tires before snow and ice strike.

If you are still not convinced, here are a few more reasons why now is the time to install winter tires:

  1. Winter Tires Have More Sipes – Have you ever compared your all-season tires to winter tires closely? If you do, you will notice that winter tires have sipes. Sipes are the squiggling lines inside your tread. When they are in contact with the pavement, they open into little pockets. These pockets allow water to get in, the sipes close as the tire rotates, and then the droplets are flung out the back; thus, not interfering with your grip on the road.
  2. Better Grip in Icy Situations – The rubber compounds used on winter tires are engineered specially to hold flexibility despite cold temperatures. This allows the tread to conform to the pavement, even in the tiniest irregularities of ice. Your all-season tires harden, resembling a hockey puck that smoothly slides across the ice; thus, not providing much traction.
  3. Better Grip Means Better Stopping – You want to come to a full stop despite road conditions. In one test, winter tires stopped on wet pavement in 35.5 metres at 7 degrees Celsius, while summer tires took 42.5 metres to stop in the same conditions. Worse, at the point where the car with winter tires stopped, the vehicle with all-season tires was still moving at 32 kilometres per hour.
  4. The Multi-Cell Compounds – Winter tires come with multi-cell compounds which are like microscopic bubbles inside the rubber treads. As the tires wear down, these bubbles become exposed and work like larger versions of the sipes. The bubbles bring in the water off the ice, reduce slippage, and offer a stronger grip on the road.

Now is the Time to Install Winter Tires – Visit Your Auto Repair Shop Serving Vancouver and Surrounding Cities Today

The temperatures in the area are dropping fast. If you would like to avoid the rush and get winter tires on your vehicle sooner than later, contact the team at Minit-Tune & Brake Auto Centres to set up an appointment today. We offer everything from new tire purchases to installing winter tires.

Take advantage of our convenient locations and find an auto repair shop near you today. For questions about auto repairs in Vancouver and its surrounding cities, or to inquire about winter tires, contact a centre in your area.

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