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4 Tips on Buying Snow Tires



Its inevitable, the snow and frigid weather will be here before you know it! West Hartford, CT winters are no doubt tough so we want to make sure you are as prepared as possible. Do you get nervous when driving in rain, sleet, snow or icy conditions? We do too.


Estimating brake time and handling ability is difficult for all drivers because there are so many factors such as weather conditions, speed, curve of road, traffic, visibility etc. We advise that you look into investing in some snow tires this year and keep your family safe while on the road. Our West Hartford, Connecticut expert mechanics are offering some advice on what to look for when purchasing snow tires for your vehicle. 


Snow Tire Symbol:

First off, when shopping for snow tires, look for the pictograph of a peaked mountain with a snowflake on the tires’ sidewall to ensure that they meet snow traction performance requirements. This means it has been designed specifically for use in snowy conditions.


Tread Design:

There are three general features of a winter tire that make for good performance: tread design, tread compound, and tread depth. When it comes to tread design, winter tires tend to have a single-directional tread design. A single-directional design on a tire works to move slush and snow out of the way more efficiently than other designs. The more open the tread design, the better the steering response that will result. Sipes, the thin slits in the tread blocks, are a key component in snow tires as they help a snow tire operate better on wet pavement.


Tread Depth:

Snow tires need a deeper tread depth than all-season tires in order to allow them to bite through snow with each rotation. Many snow tires ave "Winter Wear Indicators" to confirm that a tire's tread depth is deep enough for performance in snow. When a tire's tread blocks approach the Winter Wear Indicator's, it's a sign that the tire is wearing down and braking traction will be reduced as a result.


Tread Compounds:

Winter tires are made with compounds that improve traction and maintain elasticity in lower temperatures. These might include stiffer rubber at the base of treads but more flexible rubber inside to allow for a better reaction upon contact with snow or different types of materials and combinations of materials. There are numerous technologies used to enhance snow tire performance. As you shop, ask about the difference between compounds in order to find the best product for you.


Installing snow tires is an important action drivers can take to stay safe on the roads during winter. Give the International Auto Service Center a call at (860) 953-1675 with any questions and we can offer advice on the best snow tire to purchase. Call us or visit us online at https://www.iascct.com to schedule an appointment for us to mount your new snow tires!



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