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Home > Tyres > Winter Tyres
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Cold Weather Tyres

In recent years, British Winters have become more severe with wetter and colder weather presenting UK motorists with some of the most challenging driving conditions. 

According to the Department of Transport statistics for winter road accidents in the UK increased by an incredible 267% equating to 6,693 accidents.

Driving in cold weather conditions can dramatically impact your safety and vehicle performance. Here we take a look at whether it’s worth the extra effort to switch to Cold Weather Tyres, also known as Winter Tyres. 

View Our Cold Weather Tyre Infographic Here

Key Fact"Cold weather tyres provide much better grip in both wet & dry conditions when the temperature falls below 7˚, so they offer extra safety typically from October to March." Stuart Jackson, Chairman TyreSafe.

Winter Tyres
Cold Weather Tyres Information

More Information

What Are Cold Weather Tyres?

Cold Weather tyres, or Winter tyres are specifically designed to deliver the best possible performance and maximum safety when temperatures fall below 7˚C, making driving in winter much safer.

Driving in snow and ice can compromise your safety if your vehicle is not equipped with the correct tyres, basic manoeuvres such as accelerating and braking become more difficult due to reduced grip. 

When buying Winter tyres, it is common to go down a speed rating as they are made from a different compound from Summer tyres. It is also important to reduced speeds when driving in adverse weather conditions. Our experts can advise the maximum speed rating for Winter tyres suitable for your vehicle.

What is the difference between Cold Weather Tyres and Summer Tyres?

Cold Weather tyres contain a higher amount of rubber and silica to remain more flexible to grip at lower temperatures. Winter tyres are characterised by a more ‘aggressive’ tread pattern with deeper grooves helping more of the tyre to be in contact with the road. They also feature smaller sipes in the tread which are designed to increase grip in icy conditions.

When used in similar conditions, Summer tyres tend to become harder and less flexible, which reduces their performance and grip. 

The speed rating on Winter tyres are generally lowers than Summer tyres. 

Cold Weather Tyres Braking Distances

In a test by leading tyre safety organisation TyreSafe, two Michelin-shod Mercedes  C-Class estates were tested on an ice-rink to show the difference between summer and winter tyres . The car with winter tyres stopped in 7.01m, compared with the summer tyre car’s 9.75m. A difference of 40% less braking distance.

In addition to this, British Tyre Manufactuer’s Association found that a car braking at 60mph on a wet road at 5 degrees stopped 5 meters shorter, when fitted with Cold Weather tyres.

Cold weather tyre braking distances

When should I fit Cold Weather Tyres?

Now for the burning question, do we get enough cold weather in the UK to justify switching to Cold Weather tyres? It’s important to remember that Winter tyres are no exclusively for snowy and icy conditions. Vehicle performance can also be impacted when temperatures fall below 7˚C.

A massive 80%, or 147 days temperature fell below 7˚C between beginning of October 2011 and the end of March 2012*.  [Source TyreSafe October 2012.]

We recommend that Winter tyres are fitted in a full set during October to March to provide you with optimum safety. 

Cold Weather Tyres at ATS Euromaster

At ATS Euromaster, we offer a wide range of Winter tyres for your car, van and 4x4 at competitive prices to offer you peace of mind during the colder months.

To get more information on the right type of Cold Weather tyres for you, try out our 'Find Your Tyres' selector. Otherwise, head down to your nearest ATS Euromaster centre and ask one of our expert technicians for advice on which tyres are best for you. They can also get the tyres of your choice fitted correctly.

Where can I store my current tyres?

In addition to this, we also offer a Tyre Hotel Storage service.  So if you’re getting Winter tyres fitted to your vehicle, we will store your seasonal tyres within our Centre network giving you a fast, convenient and secure way to store your tyres. Alleviate your worry of where to keep your Summer tyres during Winter months from just £7.50 per tyre per season. 

Will Cold Weather Tyres Affect My Insurance? 

The majority of motor insurers do no charge additional costs for vehicles fitted with Cold Weather tyres as they are not classified as a modification, as long as the tyres are in a roadworthy condition and have been fitted in accordance to the vehicle manufacture’s handbook guidance. 

Cold Weather Driving Tips

  1. Ensure that your tyres are correctly inflated and that you have a minimum of 3mm of tread depth across the central three-quarters of the tyre to improved grip and control.
  2. Car batteries commonly fail during the winter months, in order to pro-long your battery life, simply go for a long drive to help the battery recharge fully. Alternatively, visit an ATS Euromaster Service Centre for a free battery check so that it can be charged before it suddenly lets you down.
  3. Your vehicle air conditioning system can help to demist your windscreens faster during the winter months to improve visibility.
  4. Top up your coolant levels to ensure there is sufficient antifreeze to provide your engine when temperatures drop.
  5. Remove all snow from your vehicle’s windows, bonnet and roof to avoid snow falling on your windscreen suddenly which could obstruct your view when travelling.
  6. Use higher gears to reduce wheel spin?
  7. Avoid harsh braking as this could lead to skidding; apply your brakes softly for more control.
  8. Give yourself plenty of time and where possible try to use the main routes which are more likely to be gritted therefore less snow will have settled.
  9. Carry a winter survival pack in your car just in case you break down. Remember to include a blanket, torch, warm clothes, food and water.
  10. Reduce your speed for more control.

TyreSafe Winter Safety Video

TyreSafe Winter Tyre Guide

What Are Cold Weather Tyres?

Cold Weather tyres, or Winter tyres are specifically designed to deliver the best possible performance and maximum safety when temperatures fall below 7˚C, making driving in winter much safer.

Driving in snow and ice can compromise your safety if your vehicle is not equipped with the correct tyres, basic manoeuvres such as accelerating and braking become more difficult due to reduced grip. 

When buying Winter tyres, it is common to go down a speed rating as they are made from a different compound from Summer tyres. It is also important to reduced speeds when driving in adverse weather conditions. Our experts can advise the maximum speed rating for Winter tyres suitable for your vehicle.

What is the difference between Cold Weather Tyres and Summer Tyres?

Cold Weather tyres contain a higher amount of rubber and silica to remain more flexible to grip at lower temperatures. Winter tyres are characterised by a more ‘aggressive’ tread pattern with deeper grooves helping more of the tyre to be in contact with the road. They also feature smaller sipes in the tread which are designed to increase grip in icy conditions.

When used in similar conditions, Summer tyres tend to become harder and less flexible, which reduces their performance and grip. 

The speed rating on Winter tyres are generally lowers than Summer tyres. 

Cold Weather Tyres Braking Distances

In a test by leading tyre safety organisation TyreSafe, two Michelin-shod Mercedes  C-Class estates were tested on an ice-rink to show the difference between summer and winter tyres . The car with winter tyres stopped in 7.01m, compared with the summer tyre car’s 9.75m. A difference of 40% less braking distance.

In addition to this, British Tyre Manufactuer’s Association found that a car braking at 60mph on a wet road at 5 degrees stopped 5 meters shorter, when fitted with Cold Weather tyres.

Cold weather tyre braking distances

When should I fit Cold Weather Tyres?

Now for the burning question, do we get enough cold weather in the UK to justify switching to Cold Weather tyres? It’s important to remember that Winter tyres are no exclusively for snowy and icy conditions. Vehicle performance can also be impacted when temperatures fall below 7˚C.

A massive 80%, or 147 days temperature fell below 7˚C between beginning of October 2011 and the end of March 2012*.  [Source TyreSafe October 2012.]

We recommend that Winter tyres are fitted in a full set during October to March to provide you with optimum safety. 

Cold Weather Tyres at ATS Euromaster

At ATS Euromaster, we offer a wide range of Winter tyres for your car, van and 4x4 at competitive prices to offer you peace of mind during the colder months.

To get more information on the right type of Cold Weather tyres for you, try out our 'Find Your Tyres' selector. Otherwise, head down to your nearest ATS Euromaster centre and ask one of our expert technicians for advice on which tyres are best for you. They can also get the tyres of your choice fitted correctly.

Where can I store my current tyres?

In addition to this, we also offer a Tyre Hotel Storage service.  So if you’re getting Winter tyres fitted to your vehicle, we will store your seasonal tyres within our Centre network giving you a fast, convenient and secure way to store your tyres. Alleviate your worry of where to keep your Summer tyres during Winter months from just £7.50 per tyre per season. 

Will Cold Weather Tyres Affect My Insurance? 

The majority of motor insurers do no charge additional costs for vehicles fitted with Cold Weather tyres as they are not classified as a modification, as long as the tyres are in a roadworthy condition and have been fitted in accordance to the vehicle manufacture’s handbook guidance. 

Cold Weather Driving Tips

  1. Ensure that your tyres are correctly inflated and that you have a minimum of 3mm of tread depth across the central three-quarters of the tyre to improved grip and control.
  2. Car batteries commonly fail during the winter months, in order to pro-long your battery life, simply go for a long drive to help the battery recharge fully. Alternatively, visit an ATS Euromaster Service Centre for a free battery check so that it can be charged before it suddenly lets you down.
  3. Your vehicle air conditioning system can help to demist your windscreens faster during the winter months to improve visibility.
  4. Top up your coolant levels to ensure there is sufficient antifreeze to provide your engine when temperatures drop.
  5. Remove all snow from your vehicle’s windows, bonnet and roof to avoid snow falling on your windscreen suddenly which could obstruct your view when travelling.
  6. Use higher gears to reduce wheel spin?
  7. Avoid harsh braking as this could lead to skidding; apply your brakes softly for more control.
  8. Give yourself plenty of time and where possible try to use the main routes which are more likely to be gritted therefore less snow will have settled.
  9. Carry a winter survival pack in your car just in case you break down. Remember to include a blanket, torch, warm clothes, food and water.
  10. Reduce your speed for more control.

TyreSafe Winter Safety Video

TyreSafe Winter Tyre Guide

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