While we didn’t witness much wintery weather to start the season, it seems to be making an appearance every week or so now. If you’ve had to brave the storm on your commute so far this year, you’re already familiar with how inclement weather makes even the most routine drives much more difficult. Luckily, there’s a chance a new pair of tires can make your winter commute a lot safer and a lot less stressful.
The Traditional Indicators it is Time for New Tires
- Are your tires more than 5 years old? If so, regardless of any other factors, it’s time for a new set. Even if the tires appear to be in good condition and have low mileage, a lot of weathering and tire degradation can take place over a 5-year span.
- The Penny Trick. You’re supposed to replace your tires once the tread reaches 2/32”. That’s pretty difficult to measure, however, so grab a penny and try the penny trick! Simply place a penny Abe-side-down in one of your tire treads. If you can see the top of Abraham Lincoln’s head, it’s time to start searching for a new set of tires. If your tires have treadwear indicators, you may be able to save the penny and bypass this step altogether.
It’s worth bearing in mind that all-season tires may start losing performance even before they show major signs of wear. About halfway through their life, traction decreases about 14 percent when accelerating in snowy conditions, and stopping distance increases by about 7 percent. Even if you aren’t planning a tire replacement this winter, be sure to consider these factors next time you are forced to drive in snowy conditions.
Maximizing the Life of Your Current Tires
It’s entirely possible that your tires are just fine to last you through the rest of the winter. However, your driving experience may still improve after an alignment if you are currently experiencing vibrations or if it’s been over a year since your last alignment. After an alignment, you can be sure that each of your tires are making full contact with the road, maximizing grip in the harshest conditions.
Prepare Your Car for Wintery Weather with Churchill Auto Care
If your vehicle needs maintenance, give us a call! We offer excellent service at a fair price for all of your automotive maintenance and repair needs. To schedule an appointment, please visit our site, give us a call at (301) 620-7620 or text us at (301)-804-6035!