Weather, Seasonal and Road Conditions Guide | ChamptiresWeather, Seasonal and Road Conditions Guide – Champtires

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Weather, Seasonal and Road Conditions Guide

Fall

Changing weather and shorter periods of daylight can make fall tricky for safe driving. Here are four fall tire tips:

  • Always refer to your vehicle’s owner’s manual and follow the recommended service schedule.
  • Check your tires. Most experts agree that 4/32 is the minimum tire tread level that is safe.
  • Check your tire pressure – cold weather can reduce tire pressure, and it’s safer to drive on tires that are properly inflated.
  • When temperatures dip below 45 degrees, it’s time to think about winter tires. Winter or “snow” tires are made from softer rubber that does a better job of gripping cold pavement. Winter treads are also specifically designed for snow and ice. Studded winter tires provide extra control but wait for snow pack. Studs don’t perform well in rain.

Potholes

Beware of potholes

Potholes can form on roads anytime, but they’re most common when winter changes to spring. Not only can driving over a pothole cause serious damage to your car and tires, but it can cause you to lose control of your vehicle.

According to Lauren Fix, a nationally recognized automotive expert, common damage from potholes are a “flat tire or damage to your tires, bent or damaged rims, suspension damage, steering damage and even damage to the body of the car. Potholes can even knock your car out of alignment so it will affect the way the tires wear and can lead to replacing tires before earlier than expected.”

Fix says that the best way to prevent potholes from damaging your tires is to make sure that they’re properly inflated. “Low tire pressure can cause bulges or blisters on the sidewalls of the tires and even dent the wheel,” she wrote in Forbes. “These problems will be visible and should be checked out as soon as possible as tires are the critical connection between your car and the road in all sorts of driving conditions.”

Rain

When tires are worn—or even bald—their grooves are no longer able to adequately obtain traction. This can cause:

  • Hydroplaning, or sliding uncontrollably on the wet surface of a road.
  • Loss of steering, braking and power control.

And hydroplaning can occur even on damp roads, so it is important to be aware of your tires tread levels. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends checking your tires’ tread levels monthly.

Spring

Spring Tire Care

Once you’ve made it through the winter, here are a few things you can do to make sure your tires are ready for spring:

  • Measure your tire tread. Most experts agree that 4/32 is the minimum tread depth that is safe.
  • Check your tire pressure.
  • Remove winter/snow tires.
  • Check tires for uneven wear and schedule a wheel alignment if you notice any.
  • Beware of potholes.

Summer / Heat

Summer Tire Tips

Long road trips, higher temperatures, hauling heavy loads and driving faster all put additional stress on your tires. Here are a few summer tire safety tips:

  • Check your tires regularly for wear and tear, but if you’re planning any driving vacations or weekend trips away, it’s imperative to inspect your tires before you leave. Finding any potential problems before you head out will increase your safety and could save you a lot of money in the long run.
  • Measure your tire tread. Worn tread can cause a myriad of problems from unexpected blowouts to hydroplaning to your brakes not functioning properly.
  • Check your tires’ sidewalls for any imperfections or bulges.
  • Find the recommended tire pressure for your vehicle in your owner’s manual. Check the pressure often, preferably when the tires are cold. And, don’t forget to check your spare tire, if your car has one. Note that the tire pressure listed on your sidewalls is the maximum pressure and is not intended to serve as notification of the correct pressure.
  • Do not overload your car or truck. Your vehicle and tires are designed to only operate safely up to their hauling limits. Carrying too much weight creates excessive heat inside your tires, which can lead to tire failure and an accident.

Winter / Ice, Cold and Snow

Winter and snow driving and tire safety tips

Here is how to make sure your tires are ready for all types of winter weather:

  • The correct tire pressure for your car and tires is essential for proper handling. A temperature change of just 10 degrees can cause a ten percent reduction, or constriction, of air in tires. So tire pressure can be affected from day to night temperature – not to mention when temperatures drop severely.
  • Check the optimal tire pressure of your vehicle on the label inside the driver’s door frame or in the owner’s manual. And whatever you do, don’t ignore the tire pressure monitoring light.
  • Worn tires—especially bald ones—can be treacherous on wet or snow-covered roads. When the tires’ grooves aren’t deep enough to channel water or snow out from beneath the tread, it impacts control of the steering wheel. Wet-weather braking and snow traction also decrease as tires wear.
  • Check your tread depth. Most experts agree that 4/32 of an inch is the minimum level required for safety.
  • If you use winter or snow tires, have them installed.

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