People Are Funny – Even About Cars!
It’s a good thing we’re all different, or the world would be a pretty boring place. One guy cheerfully spends $1,000 on chrome trim for his boat but thinks any more than $39 for a dinner setting for 8 from Walmart is a colossal rip. I see different value systems with vehicles too. A fellow was in after our first snow with his pride and joy. I was surprised to see pretty tired all season radials, and mentioned it. He said the tire guys were always trying to upsell him to expensive snow tires but he rarely used it in the snow. We don’t sell tires, but we do know about compromises. Summer tires are just that – for the summer. Snow tires are equally season specific. They’re designed with tread designs and compounds to handle winter conditions. All Season Tires are a compromise, and intended to provide ‘acceptable’ driving under a wide range of road conditions. This means they are just OK, but not the best under any conditions. You’re juggling longevity, price, and performance. Choose two out of three.
We see cars equipped with just two winter tires instead of four. One end of your vehicle is not going to react the same way the other end will. In an emergency, you’re likely to understeer or oversteer. With 4 matched tires you get better control overall, and most importantly – you get to start and stop. Traction controlled vehicles don’t actually improve your traction – they just limit your acceleration to the traction level of your tires. Use proper winter tires with your traction control. Ditto for ABS brakes.
One customer rejected winter rubber because he had front wheel drive. Most of the weight is over the front tires, and it helps you get started but does little to help you stop. Be season specific with your rubber – monitor inflation levels – and remember you’re only as good as the rubber you have on the road!