Can You Drive on Winter Tires All Year Round?

The succinct answer to this is, no you can’t because your winter tires would be worn out before the year ends. Winter tires are specifically made for snow and ice situations, not for every other season. There are all-season and summer tire alternatives that offer better performance for the most part of the year, these should be used instead. If you’re still not convinced, here are some candid reasons you can’t use winter tires all year long.

Winter Tires Wear Out Faster in Warm Temperatures 

Winter tires are made with rubber compounds that perform optimally on ice, slush and snowy roads. Traction and handling are at its peak when winter tires are used in wintry situations. Using a winter tire outside of the winter season is like changing the habitat of fish to dry land, it is suicidal. The soft, flexible rubber on winter tires will easily wear down from use in warm temperature. As such, you can’t expect to use this same tire for the rest of the year; it would have totally worn out sooner than you expect. 

Reduced Performance

You can’t use winter tires in summer and get the same traction, grip, handling, and other perks that make winter tires great for winter. You really can’t. These tires have softer treads and compound that will make manoeuvring, stopping, handling very difficult to achieve on dry roads. When you step on the brakes, for instance, the stopping time would be longer than what you’d get from an all-season tire. You need a stronger rubber compound to get optimum results on dry or wet surfaces. 

It will Cost you More 

You’re probably trying to save cost from changing out winter tires when spring comes. But do you know you’d end up spending more than you bargained for if those winter tires stay on all year? Absolutely. When the winter tires wear out (and they will, fast) you’d have to replace them – that’s an additional cost.

Also, winter tires are more expensive compared to the regular ones. It’s really not a smart idea to wear them out before the next winter, only to end up buying a new set. And don’t consider using worn-out winter tires when next winter comes, the tires would be as useless as they are in warmer conditions. 

What You Can Do 

Since using winter tires all year round isn’t the way to go, the conversation should be on seasonally swapping out tires. For many people, it is the effort that goes into the process that is discouraging. If you’re one of those, why not outsource to a local auto store to do it? It could be free of cost or a small fee may be required. 

The Bottom Line

Using winter tires all through the year is neither a smart or safe thing to do. Make it a yearly routine and commit to it for your sake and for other road users too. It will only take minutes to get it done, especially if you already have rims mounted to the tires to be installed. 

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