Are your tires safe for driving this Winter?

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As winter draws closer and the daylight hours become shorter, it’s time for motorists to take the necessary steps to ensure their safety on the roads.

Without thinking twice, most of us will have bought the can of de-icer, and topped up the antifreeze, but how often do we contemplate the suitability of our tyres for the harsh winter months? Let’s take a brief look at some important considerations concerning tyre safety as we head towards the end of the year.

Snow tyres are a great investment for any motorist. Living in the UK, it’s quite easy to be caught out by an unexpected snow flurry, so do consider being prepared by having a set of these specialised tyres installed. With a greater tread, and the ability to withstand the plummeting temperatures, a vehicle’s traction is greatly enhanced when driving on snow tyres.

Checking the tread on your current tyres is also of vital importance. The legal limit for tyre tread is 1.6mm, however, 3mm is the recommended minimum. The difference between these two measurements is a stopping distance of two car lengths on a wet road. Perhaps, the difference between a safe stop and a crash? Also check the tread on both sides of the tyre, as an uneven measurement may point to an alignment problem.

Tyre pressure is an equally important factor to consider at this time of year. For every drop of 10-degrees in temperature, a tyre will lose a single PSI of pressure. Those of us who had adequately inflated tyres during the warmer months, may now have dangerously soft tyres. Traction and handling are greatly affected by tyre pressure, so be sure to bear this in mind when heading out onto those hazardous roads. It’s also useful to point out that properly inflated tyres will lead to greater vehicle performance, allowing you to save money on fuel!

Taking steps to ensure your safety while driving in winter should be every motorist’s priority. Do ensure your tyres are ready to handle the changing environment as the colder months start to bite. After all, you never know when you might need to head out and deliver that missed Christmas present!