Snow tires vs All Season tires

Many folks don’t realize that their choice of tires can have a big impact on their vehicle’s performance. However, if you follow NASCAR or Formula 1, you’ll know that many races come down to tire management on the winning car. The same goes for deciding between snow tires vs all-season tires. Both have their merits, but the key difference is that nothing will give you the winter performance you need like a set of snow tires. However, all-season tires generally do fine throughout the year and give you the ability to use one set of tires on your vehicle, saving you the cost of having an extra set of tires.

At McCluskey Chevrolet, our tire experts will help you find the right brand and type of tires for your car, truck, or SUV. We not only carry most major brands of tires, but we also have snow tires and all-season tires for all makes and models, not just the great vehicles made by Chevrolet. So no matter what vehicle you drive, you can head over to McCluskey Chevrolet to get a new set of snow tires or all-season tires. In addition, our tire center will help you with all your tire needs to make sure you get the performance and longevity out of your set of tires. While this may not help you win a NASCAR or Formula 1 race, it will keep your choice of car, truck, or SUV running smoothly for a good long time.

Four tires are shown during a Snow tires vs All Season tires comparison.

What Is a Snow Tire?

Once upon a time, drivers used to have to put chains on their tires to help them get through the snow and ice of winter. However, while the chains gave their cars added traction, they were really difficult to get on and could do serious damage to pavement, making them highly unpopular with municipal authorities tasked with maintaining roads and bridges. This is why tire manufacturers developed snow tires for winter weather.

Snow tires are also sometimes called winter tires, and there are three key components to snow tires that make them unique and distinct from summer and all-season tires. First, winter tires have softer tread rubber. As you probably know, winter brings in cold, dry weather. What you might not realize is that this causes the rubber in tires to stiffen and provide less traction. The result is a set of tires that don’t grip the road is more prone to skids. By making the treads from a softer rubber compound, manufacturers are able to make snow tires that won’t stiffen up in cold weather, providing better traction.

The second feature of snow tires is deeper tread depth with a unique pattern. As you drive over snow and slush, it begins to liquefy and then freeze, creating dangerous ice within the tread channels on tires. The deeper tread channels on snow tires prevent the buildup of snow and ice. In addition, the design of the tread patterns helps to move the snow, slush, ice, and water away from the tires, allowing you to drive without skidding.

The final component of snow tires that sets them apart from other tire types is the increased number of tiny slits in the tire tread, known as sipes. These little slits are barely visible to the naked eye but provide increased traction on snow tires, giving them the edge over all-season tires in inclement weather. That added traction reduces the risk of skidding and spinning out on the snow and ice.

With these three features, snow tires provide you with better grip, control, and traction on your vehicle. In short, no other tire type can handle snow, slush, and ice quite like a set of snow tires.

A tire is shown driving in the snow.

What Is an All-Season Tire?

All-season tires are a fairly recent invention. The first all-season tire was the Goodyear Tiempo, which first became available in 1977. The concept was simple: design a set of tires that could be used year-round so that drivers in temperate climates wouldn’t have the added hassle and expense of switching between two sets of tires. However, you should always keep in mind that all-season tires represent a compromise between the performance capabilities of summer tires and the traction and grip of snow tires.

If you look at all-season tires, you will see fairly deep tread grooves, certainly more than on summer tires. These are designed to do a better job moving mud and snow away from the tire so that it doesn’t build up when driving, which could lead to dangerous conditions such as skidding and loss of control. In this regard, all-season tires will give you more grip than summer tires. However, these deeper treads also lead to less responsive handling on clear roads for vehicles equipped with all-season tires. As a result, you won’t have the acceleration, fuel economy, and cornering you will get from a set of summer tires.

Similarly, all-season tires don’t have the softer tread rubber, extra biting edges, and tread depth found on snow tires. This is why vehicles with all-season tires don’t perform as well in snow and ice as ones with snow tires. You will not get the same amount of traction on a set of all-season tires during the winter months as you will from snow tires.

Ultimately, it comes down to your needs. If you live in an area with very heavy snow and sleet, then you should definitely consider getting a set of snow tires for your vehicle to provide you with the traction you need to drive safely. On the other hand, if you don’t experience harsh winters where you live, then you could probably get by with a set of all-season tires. However, if you decide to go with all-season tires, you should have your technician check for tire depth each time you bring your vehicle in for maintenance. All-season tires suffer wear and tear like other tire types, and if your technician tells you that your all-season tires are beginning to get bald, meaning the tread depth is diminishing, then it may be time for you to get a new set of tires for your vehicle.

A tire is shown in close up.

Other Tire Services We Offer

Just like most other functional components on your vehicle, such as the engine and transmission, your set of tires needs to be routinely checked and maintained to make sure that you will get optimal performance out of your vehicle. Tire rotation is a very important yet simple part of tire maintenance. Every 7,500 miles, you can come to McCluskey Chevrolet for a tire rotation, where we switch the front and rear tires on your vehicle. Basically, the tires on your vehicle wear at different rates, especially if you are driving a front-wheel drive or rear-wheel drive model. Each tire performs a different task, leading to uneven wear. Eventually, this can lead to problems with vehicle handling. Come in for a tire rotation to extend the life of your vehicle’s tires and to maintain exceptional performance.

We can also help you by routinely checking the wheel alignment and balance on your tires. Regular use of your vehicle can lead you to hit potholes and other debris that may, over time, lead to your wheels becoming misaligned or unbalanced. Our tire experts will check the wheel alignment and balance on your vehicle and, if necessary, make the needed adjustments to keep you driving safely.

Tire pressure is another issue that can arise with your vehicle. Most cars today feature a tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS). If the TPMS warning light comes on, it could mean that there is an issue with low air pressure in your tires. This may be caused by seasonal conditions or by a nail in your tire. For example, as the temperature drops outside, the air pressure inside your tires will drop as well. Stop in and let us check your tires and your TPMS to make sure there is no problem and to make any necessary repairs and adjustments.

In addition to these services, our team of technicians can also help you replace your tires if they have too much wear on them. Driving on severely worn tires is a major hazard that should be addressed as soon as possible. We offer a wide selection of replacement tires at affordable prices and will properly mount and balance them for you for a smooth ride.

Contact Us

McCluskey Chevrolet in the Kings Automall
9673 Kings Automall Rd
Cincinnati, OH 45249

McCluskey Chevrolet Used Car Superstore
435 E. Galbraith Rd
Cincinnati, OH 45251
McCluskey Chevrolet 39.29866, -84.307.