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Picking the Best Winter Tires in NE Ohio

 

When it comes to travel in our part of the country, we may have the most diverse winter conditions in the US. There’s Lake Effect, black ice, snow drifts, miles-long freeway backups, …we’ve got them.

NE Ohioans know they need “snow tires” to get around their streets and highways, but these tires come in different types, and picking the right tire depends on individual driving conditions.

We commonly think of a “snow tire” as a tire with an open, deep tread, with larger open “spaces” between the rubber treads. The spaces should release snow and ice more easily for a better grip to the road below.

But modern winter tires have other characteristics for specific weather and road conditions. Below, we identify some of the tire types available to help you make the best choice.

WINTER TIRES

A “Dedicated Winter Tire” is a tire specifically designed for driving at temperatures below 45 °F. All winter tires have physical and material characteristics that give more traction in cold weather.

A dedicated winter tire will display the "Snowflake on the Mountain" symbol (ASTM). It may also display Mud and Snow symbol (see All-Season tires, below).

MUD and SNOW (M+S)

This designation is used for both All-Season and winter tires that are designed to provide improved traction on snow and ice. These tires have a more aggressive tread along at least one edge of the tire, designed to engage a snowy surface.

ALL-SEASON TIRES

The M+S rating denotes All-Season capability. Cars sold in the U.S. are often provided with All-Season tires because a single set of tires eliminate changing out tires between the seasons. The All-Season tire is a compromise; it is quieter on clear roads than a winter tire, but is less capable on snow and ice than a winter tire. (Source: Wikipedia)

(NOTE: For deep snow, dedicated winter tires are more useful than the Aall-Season tires.

ALL-TERRAIN TIRES

Vehicles equipped with four-wheel drive (and which are intended for off-road use) can benefit from all-terrain tires, but such tires are not intended for street or highway use.

For more information about tires and road safety, let's discuss your concerns.

 
Julia Zettl