What happens if you drive on winter tires in the summer?


March 27, 2021, 18:46 | Auto

Experts cite the most common forms of tread wear and their causes.

What happens if you drive on winter tires in summer?

The difference between warm days and cold nights makes many drivers wonder if they should leave winter tires on their cars or if it is time to switch to all-season or summer tires, informs Ukr.Media.

Experts say the best time to change winter tires to summer tires is when the ambient temperature you're driving in (remember it's colder at night) is consistently above 7 degrees Celsius and there's little or no chance of snow .

Driving on winter tires in summer is wrong

Some people don't think it's necessary, but driving winter tires in the summer poses some safety risks, so experts recommend buying summer or all-season tires for optimal safety all summer long, regardless of road conditions

What happens if you drive winter tires in the summer?

  • Winter tires work best in cold weather and dissipate heat less effectively, so the risks of overpressure and rupture much higher.
  • The rubber compound is more elastic, which affects the handling and feel of your car on the road, especially when you make sharp turns, which often results in a loss of control.
  • Because the rubber compound is softer, the tread changes shape more. . This creates more rolling resistance and requires more effort, which means more fuel.
  • When you drive winter tires in the summer, you shorten their life by almost 60 percent compared to if they were only used in winter. conditions.
  • Tire technology has come a long way, but winter tires are still much noisier than summer or all-season tires.

Purchasing new tires is often timed to coincide with the seasonal change. Experts advise to carefully monitor tread wear, as tires are the most important element of car safety. The lifetime of even the most expensive premium tires is limited to an average of four seasons, cheap models work within their performance characteristics even less.

What is tire tread wear

Tyre tread wear can tell a lot about a car's suspension. In particular, it can tell you if the camber angles, inflation and suspension components are within specification. Experts list the most common forms of tread wear and their causes.

Over-inflated tires

Tread tread wear in the center of the picture indicates that the pressure is too high. This can cause the contact patch to shrink and the center of the tire to take the full load.

Underinflated tires

Tread wear around the edges of the tire usually indicates that the tire pressure is below the specified. When a tire is underinflated, the contact patch increases and the load is transferred to the outer edges of the patch.

Gradual tire wear

An indicator of excessive positive or negative toe angle is tire binding or abrasion, which can be detected by running your fingertips along the edge of each tread tire or tread block. Shading on the inside of the tire tread indicates excessive toe-in, while a ridge on the outside of the tread indicates toe-out. The camber geometry can also be greatly affected by changes in suspension height.

Gear wear

Clumsy or jagged depressions that appear on the tread wear surface of a tire can indicate loose, worn or bent suspension parts. Worn shocks or unbalanced tires can also cause cupping, but this is usually more indicative of a concentric pattern. The most likely causes are shock absorbers and struts, as they provide the damping force to control tire movement.

Tread wear on the outer edge

Tread wear on the outer edge of the tire rarely happens these days, but it does happen. Positive camber, caster and toe can lead to outer edge wear. If you see edge wear on one side, check the axial force and backlash. But it should be noted that the main reason for the wear of the outer edge of modern cars is excessive cornering.

Internal tread wear

The wear of the tire tread on the inner edge is the most common tread wear problem that most technicians face. Angles that cause this type of wear usually have negative tapers and cambers. As for parts, there are three component sources of wear on the inner edge of the tread: bushings, springs and loads.


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