Back in January, we offered a brief guide to winter tires and their importance in the icy conditions that we’re used to here in Calgary. Now that winter is coming to a close, it’s a good idea to get a grip on the differences between seasonal tire designs in general and why you should switch to a summer set when the ice melts.
All-Season vs. All-Weather
In locations that experience mild and uniform climate, all-season tires can be a safe bet year-round. However, it goes without saying that this doesn’t really fly during an Alberta winter. So what about all-weather tires? Are they the same as all-season? Definitely not. All-weather tires are marked by the mountain-shaped symbol designated by Transport Canada to certify as having passed winter condition tests. The rubber compounds they employ, as well as the design of their treads and siping, make them a generally good choice for winter while their versatility also allows drivers to leave them on year-round. That just leaves one question…
Why Summer Tires?
Firstly, during summer, winter tires have unfavorable stopping distances and are far more likely to fail in the heat. While all-weather tires can be a practical compromise, there are ways in which they can’t quite compete with the summer design. There’s a reason you may have heard these being referred to as “performance tires.” The warmer seasons give BMW lovers like us the opportunity to really enjoy the experience of our performance vehicle again. The compound, siping, and treads of a well-engineered summer tire are beautifully optimized for significantly improved traction and stopping distance. Being able to make safer corners during a family road trip or even in a summer thunderstorm will give you both peace of mind and more bang for your buck.
Things to Keep in Mind
Given the nuances that go into engineering tires for different seasons (not to mention our local climate), the central takeaway is to avoid mismatching your tires with the season and consider both the safety and performance benefits of each design. However, no matter how optimized for the season a tire might be, don’t neglect to keep an eye on their condition and pressure as always. Higher temperatures can lead to inaccurate pressure readings, so check in the morning before things get too hot!
Are you ready for spring and summer? Better plan ahead! To get the best and safest performance, book an appointment for summer tire installation by calling Motorwerkes at (403) 768-3162 today!