Selecting The Right Tires
- Choosing the right tire can be a very overwhelming task considering the selection one has to choose from. Many people know little about tires and what tires are appropriate for their vehicle. Tires are a major investment and warrants careful consideration as tires affect the personality and performance of a vehicle. Tires that are worn can adversely affect the handling of your vehicle, possibly even making it dangerous. Keeping tires in good condition, as well as properly inflated can be as important as changing your engine oil. Doing some research to learn about the types of tires and factors to consider before purchasing tires can make a big deal in your overall satisfaction of the tires.
Factors to consider when choosing tires:
- The first step in choosing tires is to learn about the manufacturer’s requirement. Ensure that the size of tire is correct for the vehicle so that it can carry the weight of the vehicle. The tire size can be found in the owner’s manual, in the car or on the current tires.
- Consider the conditions the vehicle will be driving in and choose tires appropriately. All-season, high performance, winter and off-road tires are all types of tires to consider. Driving tires in the road conditions they were made for is another important consideration when selecting a tire.
- Price versus value plays an important role in tire selection. Be sure to compare “price per mile” before selecting tires. Often tire stores will have specials throughout the year which can save customers some money.
- Each manufacturer, as well as each model of tire has different warranty coverage. Be sure to consider length of warranty as well as what the warranty covers. Some warranties may cover flat tires, offer roadside assistance etc but also look into the procedure that is to be followed if a tire needs to repair. Sometimes the tire can only be repaired by the company you bought the tire from.
Types of Tires
To determine what type of tire that is needed consider the driving conditions you will encounter yearly with the car. Is there rain, snow, ice, off-road, long trips? Categories of tires include:
All-season – All-season tires are designed to provide good traction in a wide variety of road conditions, including wet, dry and mud and snow. However, this design limits the tire’s performance in extreme conditions. All-season tires can be used all year round to save having to change the tires to suit the season.
Performance – Performance tires combine good looks with good grip for precise, high-speed driving. These tires wear out faster than all-season and are more expensive however, offer that more “sporty” look and feature a softer rubber compound for improved traction, especially on high speed cornering.
Winter – Winter tires are designed to excel in colder temperatures along with slush, ice, snow. They have tread patterns that are specifically designed to bite into snow and ice. As they are made from softer rubber compounds that retain their flexibility in cold weather, this allows the tire to better conform to the surface of the road and get a better grip on snowy and icy surfaces.
Off-road – Off-road tires generally have as much capability off the road as they do on the road. These tires can handle travels on snow-covered roads, as well as gravel, stone, soil and sandy off-road trails. The multifaceted tread blocks are a feature of the tire to help deliver traction in any direction on gravel roads and dirt trails.
Toyo Tires Overview Toyo Tire has built a solid reputation around the world in the tire industry. At first they manufactured tires only in Japan, beginning in 1945. They first opened their doors in the United States in 1966 and currently has it’s state-of-the-art factory in Georgia. They also diversified...
BF Goodrich Tires Overview BFGoodrich was the first American tire manufacturer, pioneered in 1896. BF Goodrich tires has many notable firsts including in 1903, the first car to cross into the US was outfitted with BF Goodrich tires; the first airplane to cross the Atlantic in 1927 wore BF Goodrich...
Goodyear Tires Overview The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company was founded in 1898 in Ohio. It is noted that Goodyear’s first tires were successful as they were easily detachable and required little maintenance. The Goodyear blimp, easily recognizable in many parts of the world, first flew in 1925. The blimp...
Bridgestone Tires Overview The very first Bridgestone tire was produced in 1930 in Japan. It produced tires based solely with Japanese technology, ran into some early difficulties but eventually the company diversified into the overseas markets. It even started manufacturing motorcycles at one point however, this proved to be less...
Firestone Tires Overview Firestone is the largest subsidiary of Bridgestone and manufactures a wide range of brand tires for automotive and commercial vehicles. The brand is also very prominent in the agricultural, forestry and mining industries. During the 1900s, Firestone first manufactured tires for wagons, buggies etc. Over the years they...
Michelin Tires Overview Michelin is a tire manufacturer that was originally founded in France in the late 1880s. Years later, Michelin began making tires in the US and has become one of the largest tire manufacturers in the world. Michelin also owns BF Goodrich and Uniroyal. Michelin tires are designed...