Ohio winters can be truly brutal. With snow everywhere, it can be next to impossible to get a grip on the sidewalk as you're walking down the sidewalk. So, what's the solution? Get out the winter boots, of course. Slip your toes into some sturdy winter boots and your grip is solid and your feet are warm.
You may not realize it, but the same goes for your car! Just like you may have special boots you only get out when winter rolls around, it's a great idea to have special winter tires you have installed when the roads are cold and potentially icy. You wouldn't go out in the snow in your summer sandals, so don't expect your car to do the same.
The Science Behind It
(Photo: Erik Drost / Flickr)
The icy chill of winter complicates the relationship between the rubber and the road. What is usually a well-engineered interplay between grippy rubber and a tactile road goes out the window when snow, ice, and water get wedged in between. Not only does the ice change the surface of the road, it changes the chemistry of the tire. Here's how it breaks down on both sides.
When you play hockey or go ice skating, it's obvious how frictionless ice is. Surprisingly, the question of why ice is slippery is something that has caused some debate within the scientific community. One prominent idea, according to an article published by Dartmouth College, is that pressure on ice causes a very thin layer of water to appear, creating an extremely slippery buffer between ice and the thing that's applying pressure. When you drive on ice, you're compressing it and making it extremely slippery.
The chemistry of your tires also plays a huge role in how safely you can drive during the winter. The rubber used in "all-season" or three-season tires loses its flexibility in cold weather, compromising how well it conforms to the road. Furthermore, the tread on your summer tires won't be as deep or designed in such a way that helps the tire shed snow like winter tires.
What to Do
(Photo: MRoach / Flickr)
The Service Department staff at Yark Automotive Group in Toledo, OH, recommends owning two sets of wheels and tires so you're prepared for snowfall that can cause an accident. It may seem inefficient to keep two sets of tires, but changing your regular tires for winter tires will actually slow down the rate at which you're wearing down the tread.
1. Choose Your Winter Tires: Bring your vehicle into a service center at a Yark Automotive Group dealership in Toledo, OH, and our expert service staff will help you go over your winter tire options and answer any questions you may have on quality, durability, cost and other differences between tires.
2. Choose Your Wheels (Optional): Many choose to simply buy an extra pair of wheels upon which to mount their winter tires. This makes it easier to mount your tires once winter comes since it only requires a simple wheel swap. One thing to keep in mind if you choose to keep your original set of wheels on year round is that the tire-swapping can take longer and requires special equipment.
3. Storage: One factor some may not consider is where to store the tires they aren't using. You can safety store tires stacked in a garage but it may be worth looking into tire storage services.
4. Drive!: Once your winter tires have been mounted by a qualified professional, such as the tire specialists at Yark Auto dealerships, you'll be better prepared to tackle snowy roads.
Tire Services at Yark Auto in Toledo, OH
Whether you drive a Chevrolet, BMW, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram, Nissan, Subaru, Toyota, Fiat, or Alfa Romeo, visit one of our dealerships near Perrysburg, Sylvania and Ottawa Hills, OH, for tire service! Contact us today to learn more.