Winter tires, whether they are snow, studded or ices, are the only ones that can guarantee you safety on harsh winter conditions. There are some good all season tires but they are an item of compromise. If you are looking for winter tires, you should know that they can be divided in the following categories:
- Snow winter tires – have usually asymmetric tread design with deep grooves so that the tire bites into snow and holds the road perfectly.
- Studded winter tires – are made specially for ice and deep snow. Studs made of very hard metal work like claws, allowing good grip when braking and accelerating. Studded tires are illegal in some states or only legal in winter months, and that’s why some drivers prefer ice tires.
- Ice tires – their tread pattern consists of small blocks with lots of sipes set very close together. Manufacturers usually add silica to the compound for improved traction on ice and flexibility at low temperatures.
Where to buy?
You can find lots of online stores that have winter tires for sale. Probably the biggest online store is tirefactory.net
- and of course numerous websites of tire manufacturers
The prices for winter tires range from $70 for those like Firestone, Hankook or Falken to $100-120 for Michelin, Bridgestone or Toyo and finally to $170-200 for Nokian. The difference between cheap and expensive tires lies in the type of compound, number of innovations, wear and as a result, quality of the tire.
Tips for buyers
Before looking for winter tires for sale you should think about the following conditions
- where you will drive: city center or in the country
- what the most frequent road condition is: roads are covered with ice, there is a deep snow, slush or the road is clear
- temperature ranges: in mild climate when temperature does not drop below 0C all season tires may be appropriate, in Northern regions you need dedicated winter tires
According to your answers to these questions, different type of tires will be suitable.
The choice between studded and unstudded tires is relatively easy. The studded ones are developed for good grip and braking on ice and deep snow. If you live in a city and do not drive outside frequently, consider snow or unstudded ice tires.
Pay attention to the tread design, as it is one of the determining factors of tire performance. Asymmetrical design with small frequent tread blocks is better for snow, zigzag sipes have better grip on ice, while directional tread pattern with long wide grooves has better slushplaning resistance.
There is plenty of winter snow, studded and ice tires for sale so do not hurry to choose the first one that’s offered. Try reading both expert and consumer reviews as they usually have different criteria for choosing the best tire.