As winter weather arrives, temperatures continue to drop, and roads become icy and snow covered, many drivers begin to question the need for winter tires and wonder which tires are best for their particular vehicle. To help answer these questions we turned to Consumer Reports, which has not only tested practically every tire on the market but also provided a few simple questions to ask when deciding whether you need winter tires or if all-season tires will get you through the year.
Before you begin shopping for winter tires, take into consideration your particular situation and ask yourself these questions:
What type of vehicle do you drive and what type of tires do you currently use?
Many sports cars and sedans come with summer tires that do not perform well during the colder months. Unlike these tires, winter tires remain flexible even in freezing temperatures, providing enhanced grip and braking performance. You may also need performance winter tires to replace regular performance tires depending on the type of vehicle you drive and the handling capabilities required.
Where do you live and how bad are the winters?
For motorists in northern climates who deal with bad weather regularly, all-season tires are generally not an adequate substitute to winter tires. Tough snow and icy conditions require the extra grip and braking performance only offered by winter tires.
Do you work in a field that requires you to commute to work no matter the conditions, such as a doctor, firefighter, or police officer?
If you answered yes, than winter tires are your best and safest option. Drivers that can stay home and off the roads until they are cleared on the other hand, will probably do just fine with all-season tires.
After reviewing the above questions, you may have determined that winter tires are the best option. To help you narrow down the best tires available, Consumer Reports has listed their top choices based on extensive testing. Here we list the top three best winter tires in three different categories.
Regular Winter Tires:
Performance Winter Tires:
- Nokian WR G2
- Hankook Winter i*cept evo
- Michelin Pilot Alpin PA3
Light Truck Winter Tires:
- Continental ExtremeWinterContact
- Nokian Hakkapeliitta R Sport Utility
- General Altimax Arctic
Regardless of whether you decide to go with winter or all-season tires, regularly check your tire pressure throughout the winter as it can drop as the temperatures continue to go down, and also check your tread depth. If needed, have your tires replaced before you run into any troubles on the roads. Have additional winter tire questions or need assistance installing new tires? Contact Pfeiffer Used Cars & Quick Lane’s service department and schedule an auto service appointment today!