Most cars in the UK come with summer tyres to cope up with the warmer weather. However, as the temperature drops below 7°C between December and February, car owners swap them for their winter variants.
Winter tyres have their unique advantages. They are designed to work on roads covered with ice or snow, and their unique tread pattern provides excellent grip and reduced stopping distance even in the most adverse conditions.
If maintained properly, a set of winter tyres can easily last for at least two seasons even with heavy to moderate use. How you clean, and store them during summer time also plays a critical part in ensuring their longevity. So, let’s take a look at how you can maintain your car’s winter tyres to bring out the best of their life.
Maintaining the tyre –
Periodically check the air pressure – Colder temperature will decrease the air pressure in the car tyres. Get the tyre inflation checked at least once every two weeks to make sure they have correct air pressure. Under-inflated tyres will lose their shape and wear out a lot faster. They will also have higher rolling resistance and offer below-par performance.
Rotate them once a month – Tyres on the front and rear axles often show different wear patterns, especially if you are driving your car every day in a city. Rotate them once every month to ensure equal wear on the whole set. It will dramatically increase the lifespan of the tyres, even if you are driving your vehicle with winter tyres in Manchester or anywhere else in the UK.
Check the treads – Although winter tyres come with deeper and broader grooves, they have a higher percentage of softer natural rubber compound. It is better to take a look at your car’s winter tyres every once in a while to make sure they are not too worn out.
It is illegal to drive with tyres that have a tread depth of less than 1.6 mm. Also, you will severely compromise your on-road safety if you are driving on snow with worn out tyres.
You can use a 2p coin to measure the tread depth. Insert the coin into the central section of the tread, and check if it is visible from the sides or not. If you can see the coin, your car tyres have worn out below the safe level.
Cleaning the tyres and preparing them for storage –
Before stowing them away for the summer, you should clean them to prevent any rust or dirt accumulation. Use some soapy water, and wash out all the grit, sand and salt from the rims. Remember also to wash the carcass to remove dirt and corrosive objects from its body.
After it is thoroughly cleaned, let it sit for some time to dry out completely. Do not store the tyres when there is water left on its body or rims. It will create rust and reduce the life of the unit.
When it is completely dry, store it in a place away from direct sunlight. Ideally, you should keep them on a tyre rack above ground, and not stack one on top of another.
Remember not to remove the tyre from its rim. If it is damaged, you can take it to a vehicle service garage like Gilgal Tyre. They offer general repairs and sell car tyres in Manchester.
Follow these tips, and you will maximise the life of your car tyres and ensure that they are in proper working condition even in the next season.