Allow for sufficient driving time during the winter

Since it is more challenging to drive during the wintertime it is essential that you leave yourself with some extra time to get to your desired destination. One of the worst things that you can do during the winter is to be in a hurry. When you are in a hurry you tend to drive faster, be more agitated and keep shorter distances to the cars in front of you. Since you have a longer braking distance during the winter than you have with summer tyres on dry tarmac, you are more likely to end up in a fender bender.

By making sure that you have sufficient time, you can drive more cautiously. You don’t need to get in a bad mood and you can relax and enjoy the drive. Make sure that you know your driving route so that you don’t have to try to find it via your phone while driving. It is also advisable to stop and call and inform that you are late if you will not make it on time, rather than trying to make up time. An accident will surely slow you down more than a few minutes.

Make sure that you always have a good set of premium winter tyres on your car to ensure that if you need to brake quickly, the tyres can provide the safety you need and make your car to stop in time before you are in an accident. If you have studded tyres on your car you will probably have the best chances to stop your car quickly. They have better performance especially on ice than the non-studded tyres. Weather to choose studded or non-studded tyres depend a lot on where you live. Since they are not allowed in all countries, you first need to check if they are available in your country.

If they are not allowed you will only have the non-studded option and then the choice is evident. If you have both options available, then since both are good the choice is up to you. The studded are superior on ice, so if you want the best possible grip on ice you should choose studded tyres, but you need to know that travelling to other countries can be problematic. So before you jump in the car and drive to the Alps, you need to check if you will enter any countries that have limitation against them.

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Not having to change to winter tyres can have its advantages

The ability to have one set of tyres for the whole year can be advantageous for the countries that allow all year round tyres. By having one set of tyres that are winter approved, but can still be used during the summer is great, as you don’t have to worry about when to change tyres. You then only have to worry about one thing and that is the wear of the tyres, by measuring the tread depth and ensure that you rotate the tyres to achieve even wear between the rear and the front tyres. If you are able to manage that you can have a very trouble free driving experience.

Winter approved all-weather tyres are not available in all countries as they are mainly meant for areas that don’t have mandatory winter tyre regulations, where winter tyres are mandatory for a longer period of time. So there it makes sense to have two separate sets of tyres. Also the dedicated winter tyres do perform better as they have been optimized for only one season, while the all-weather tyres have been designed to cover both summer and winter weather. They are however much better and safer than trying to drive with summer tyres in winter conditions.

When you don’t have to worry about when to change tyres to winter tyres, then you are always ready to drive. You will never have to leave behind because you have the wrong tyres on your car. This is great if you really need your car for daily driving, as you won’t have to risk getting caught with wrong tyres on your car. The key is really that it is unsafe to drive with summer tyres, so that if you end up with summer tyres and the weather has changed so that you all of a sudden have winter weather, then you should never try to drive. This can cause problems for some that are dependent on their cars and will still try to drive. The all-weather tyres provide a very good way for these people not having to worry about he weather. Also for people who live in areas that can have very much alternating weather or live close to areas where you can within a few hours drive reach different conditions. Here these tyres can be your perfect tyre.

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All-weather tyres will get you through the year

There is one type of tyre that can be used all year round regardless of what weather condition you will experience. These are the so-called all-weather tyres that if they are winter approved can handle both summer and winter conditions. This is excellent news for people who live in areas where the weather can change drastically or if you live in areas where there is always only a few hours drive for either a beach experience or a day on the ski slopes. Here you can imagine it would be almost impossible to have an active lifestyle if you were forced to change tyres in between.

The all-weather tyres allow you to always be ready to drive and not having to worry about changing from summer tyres to winter tyres depending on what weather there might be. The same might happen if you often alternate between summer weather and winter weather because you live in an area that is between the season zones. If you live in Northern Europe or Southern Europe it is quite clear, in the North you will have two sets of tyres, one set of summer tyres and one set of winter tyres, as the season is so distinct. Winter tyres will always give you the best performance and the season is long and harsh enough to actually change tyres.

If you live in Southern Europe, you will mostly be ok with just having summer tyres, so no need ever for winter tyres. If you still have some occasional winter weather, you can choose all-weather tyres, or then not use your car during the time you have the winter weather. The options are easy, the all-weather tyres provide you with great safety in these conditions and you should not drive your car if you have summer tyres on the car and you have snow or ice on the ground. Summer tyres will not be able to perform in these conditions and you will not have sufficient grip to avoid an accident. The heavier car you have the more difficult it will be to get your car to stop.

The all-weather tyres is a great tyre option for people who are in daily need of the car and want to be able to drive everyday regardless of weather conditions and don’t want to bother with changing tyres.

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Tyre options that you should know about

If you feel that your current winter tyres are not good enough, you might have selected wrong type of tyres. When you are looking at summer tyres, there are fewer choices. Summer tyres are quite similar; there might be different dimension and high speed rating tyres and more sporty tires. However, when it comes to winter tyres, you have a few bigger differences. You have in some markets winter tyres with metal studs and you have tyres without. The metal studded tyres are not allowed in all the markets.

Winter tyres should only be used during the winter season, unless you choose winter approved all-weather tyres, which is an all round tyre that can be used all year round. It is designed to handle both warm summer temperatures and wet and dry surfaces as well as it can handle cold temperatures and slippery surfaces such as snow and ice. This is a great tyre option for the countries that don’t have a full season on winter weather, but still need to have the safety of a winter tyre when the winter weather arrives.

The tyre option depends a lot of what is available in your country as well as what weather conditions that you are mostly present when you are driving. It is clear that if you have any type of winter weather such as low temperatures, ice or snow you will need winter tyres on your car to be able to drive safely.

Make sure that if you choose studded tyres that you might not be able to drive in any country as well as there will be dates that you have to comply to when you are allowed to have them on and when they have to be removed. The non-studded tyres are much more versatile when it comes to that, but they need a summer tyre option for the summer months. The all-weather tyre is the only option that allows you to use only one tyre for the whole year, but it is not recommended in areas where you actually have a long and harsh winter.

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Allow for more time to reach your destination during the winter season

Tight timetable and stress is not a good starting condition for driving. This is even more important to realize during the wintertime, where being in a hurry can easily end up in an accident. Driving should be all about driving cautiously and taking your time. Making sure that you keep sufficient distance to the cars in front of you as well as allowing the time it takes regardless of heavy traffic or unexpected events or delays. It is of course extra important to keep your distance during wintertime if you have snow or icy conditions, as your braking distance will be prolonged.

Make sure that you have equipped your vehicle with a good set of summer tyres for the summer season and a good set of winter tyres for the winter season. Both will in each their own way, help to ensure that you will have the best performance of your vehicle. This is why you alternate between these tyres, so that you best can handle the specifics of each season. During the summer season, you want to make sure that you have superior grip on dry and wet roads with excellent driving response.

During the winter season you have the option to choose either studded or non-studded tyres, if they are allowed in the country you live. In some countries you also have the all-weather tyres, which is a hybrid of a summer and a winter tyre and can be winter approved and have the 3PMSF-symbol on the sidewall. As long as they are winter approved they will give you good performance on winter surfaces. You still need to change to summer tyres if you have winter tyres, unless you use all-weather tyres that are designed for all year round use.

For normal winter and summer tyres, they are created for just one season. This means that the rubber compound and the tread designed is specifically designed for the conditions that you face during these conditions. So during the summer it is mainly wet and dry roads, while being able to prevent aquaplaning. For winter you will need to ensure that the tyre remains soft even at very low temperatures. They also have to excel on surfaces such as ice and snow, while also being able to prevent slushplaning in slushy conditions.

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What happens with summer tyres during the winter?

There is a reason why you need to change to winter tyres during the winter, if you plan to drive in winter conditions. Winter conditions isn’t merely snow and ice, it is also cold temperatures. When the temperature drops below zero degrees Celsius the rubber compound that is used in summer tyres will become hard and will lose its flexibility. When you have a soft tyre, the tyre can adapt to the road surface and the rubber is pressed into the small cavities in the surface to create a very good grip.

When you then try to drive during wintertime with summer tyres, they will have severely reduced grip when the temperature drops below zero. So even if you don’t have any snow or ice present, you should have winter tyres on your car for better driving performance during the cold weather. Summer tyres also have a tread pattern that is optimized for dry and warm summer roads. They can handle wet roads as well as they have been optimized for good wet grip, but not for any snow or ice. They have no features to handle snow or ice. As good as the summer tyre is on summer roads, it is almost equally bad on winter roads, as they have not been designed for that.

So even if you choose a non-studded tyre, that is a winter tyre that doesn’t have metal studs, this tyre is still designed with winter conditions in mind. The rubber compound used in these tyres will not get hard even at very low temperatures and the tread is optimized for adding grip both on snow and ice. The tread pattern will provide you with both grip and traction for safe driving on ice, snow and even on slush. They will prevent you from slushplaning, where the car in a similar way as aquaplaning, will lose contact with the road surface and you end up sliding on a layer of slush.

If you live in areas that don’t really have severe winter weather, you might be able to use all-weather tyres. If you chose a winter approved all-weather tyre, it will have the properties of both a summer and a winter tyres combined into one, so that you have a perfect all year round tyre. This means that you are always ready to drive.

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When to use friction tyres

Friction tyres are also known as non-studded tyres, because they don’t use studs to create the necessary grip needed during the winter season.  They instead use innovative tread design with incorporated grip particles. Winter tyres should always be used if you have winter conditions, as summer tyres are not designed for snow, ice and not even the low temperatures.

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Dedicated winter tyres are always the safest choice

The term dedicated winter tyres is often used to tyres that are to be used only during the winter season and not during the summer. There are some all-weather tyres that are winter approved and can be used all year round, so they can be used instead of a winter tyre. Since dedicated winter tyres are not to be used during the summer months, you will need to have two sets of tyres. You will need your summer tyres and your winter tyres and change in between seasons.

When you change between the seasons it is important to get the change done before the winter arrives and it is even enough with the cold temperatures as the winter tyres perform better than summer tyres when the temperature is below zero degrees. This is due to the fact that summer tyres become hard and are not able to provide the same grip as they do in warm temperatures. So you don’t have to wait for the snow to arrive to feel comfortable with having winter tyres on, you should have them even as the temperature drops below zero.

If you change too early it is not dangerous, while a late change can be dangerous as it might force you to drive in winter conditions with summer tyres on the car. The negative effect of having the winter tyres on when it is warm, is a bit higher wear, while if you have summer tyres when it is too cold, you might not have any grip. Obviously the same is true at the end of the summer, that you don’t want to change back too early. You want to make sure that the snow has left and will not return before next winter.

The dedicated tyres will have better performance in winter conditions, as they have been designed solely for this purpose. Their tread pattern is optimized for snow and ice combined with cold temperatures. All all-weather tyre will have to take the full temperature range into perspective as well as anything from snow to wet or hot tarmac. You will always have better grip and performance from the dedicated, but with the all-weather tyre you will have a lot of convenience and the fact that you are always ready to drive regardless of weather conditions. This can be an advantage.

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Be careful with the heavy autumn rain

Driving during autumn can be a beautiful experience as it can be very colorful with the changing colors of the leaves. You are however moving from some of the easiest driving conditions with dry and clean tarmac surfaces and heading into more unstable weathers and potentially even snow and ice. The weather before the winter arrives can also be challenging as you will have both temperature drops, decreasing visibility due to shorter days and longer nights and a lot of unstable weather. Rain will increase and the heavy autumn rain can easily cause aquaplaning. The risk for aquaplaning increases if you have bad tyres, tyres that are approaching the worn out state.

It is not advisable to wait with buying a new set of tyres, especially not as you are heading into more challenging driving conditions. As soon as you reach 4 mm of tread depth it is time to change the tyres to a new set. You have much worse properties once you go below this threshold. Your braking distance will be prolonged making it more likely to be in an accident. Your also have a higher likelihood of aquaplaning. This turns the autumn into dangerous driving territory. So even if you plan to change to winter tyres in a few weeks, you should already now buy a new set of summer tyres, so that you can keep your cars out of accidents and you will also start next summer season with almost a brand new set of tyres.

Summer tyres are designed for both dry and wet roads, so the rain shouldn’t cause you that much problems if you have good quality tyres and that they are in good condition. You should though always adjust your driving according to the weather conditions and make sure that you reduce your speed accordingly. You reduce your chance for aquaplaning when the speed is reduced. You should also monitor the temperature and make sure to change to winter tyres early enough. The winter tyres are better than summer tyres when the temperature drops below zero degrees Celsius.

So make sure that you always have good quality tyres that are in good condition. This will improve your safety regardless of what season you drive in. Remember to also change to winter tyres before the winter weather arrives and respect the heavy rain as it can lead to aquaplaning.

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German winter roads and the best tyres for it

Driving in Germany during the winter require that you have adequate tyres for the weather conditions. You are however not allowed to use studded tyres in Germany. Even if you are just travelling across Germany to get to another country, you are not allowed to do so if you have winter tyres with studs. This can of course cause some problems when travelling between two countries that allow it, if you need to cross through Germany to get to the other country. In Germany you should have winter tyres without studs when you have winter conditions. If you are stopped with studded tyres, you will be fined and prohibited to continue driving until you have changed your tyres.

If you don’t have snow or ice, you can manage with summer tyres according to the legislation. It is however always safer to change to tyres that are designed for winter as soon as the temperature drops below zero degrees. In Germany this gives you basically two options for safe driving. One is to change your summer tyres to winter tyres as the cold weather is approaching and then change back at the end of the cold season.

The other option is to go for an all-weather tyre that can be used both during the summer and the winter. This gives you the freedom to drive safely everyday regardless of weather. This is perfect for your family car where you want to have the optimal safety whenever you are driving. You might however not want to put these on your sports car, or if you do you probably want to change then during the summer to a high performance summer tyre to get the most out of your sports car in terms of performance. If you don’t drive your sports car during the winter or if you are ok with not driving it when the weather is bad, then you can just keep the summer tyres on it.

If you are in areas with a lot of snow and a longer winter season, then it is always better to change between summer and winter tyres to make sure that you have the best performance during both the winter and summer season. Tyres are so important for the driving safety that it is always best to have the optimal tyre option mounted on your car.

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