Where the Rubber Hits the Road: A Guide to Buying the Right Tires

As a vehicle owner, one of the most important decisions you’ll have to make is the type of tires you choose. There are many determining factors that come into play when it comes to selecting the right tires for your vehicle. Each reason is as important as the last and should not be taken lightly. Here are some things to consider when you’re looking for new tires for your vehicle:

Type of Vehicle

One of the most important factors to consider when selecting new tires is the type of vehicle you own. Tires differ depending on whether you drive a car, a truck, an SUV or a van.

Knowing which type of tire is best for your vehicle can be difficult, but it’s important to do your research. Start with your owner’s manual, manufacturers will usually list tire specifications inside for guidance. If you need assistance,

Purpose of Vehicle

The purpose of your vehicle is also a significant factor in choosing tires. If you take transit to work and your vehicle is just for leisure on weekends, you’ll need a different set of tires than if you use your car to drive to and from work each day. The amount you drive will also determine how frequently you’ll need to replace your tires.

Weather Conditions

Weather will also play into which kind of tires will best suit your needs. If you live in the city, your tires will be completely different than if you live in a rural area with lots of backroads.

Snow tires are a good thing to consider as well. In fact, many car insurance companies will offer a discount if your car has winter/snow tires. Although there are “all-season” tires, they are usually not made to drive in the snow. You should check with the tire manufacturer to be sure.

Tire Pressure Monitoring System

Many newer vehicles come with tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS). The purpose of these systems is to let you know when one or more of your tires is under-inflated and could create an unsafe driving experience. When one of your tires is under-inflated, a yellow symbol will light up on your dashboard.

When it comes to TPMS, your vehicle can either be equipped with a direct system or an indirect system. If you have an indirect system, here are some things to remember:

  • You must reset the TPMS after each tire rotation
  • The TPMS may be incorrect if the tire size isn’t the one recommended for your vehicle
  • Tire pressure is measured by the rate of wheel revolution

If you have a direct TPMS, you won’t need to worry about resetting the system after each rotation as the system measures the true tire pressure. Although direct TPMS typically cost more, the batteries also tend to last longer – about a decade; so, the savings in the long run could outweigh the costs.

Speed Ratings

Speed ratings are calculated during tests where the tire is pushed up against a metal drum that’s moving at an increasing speed. The test shows at which speed the tire can no longer perform at its best.

Your vehicle manufacturer will always recommend a tire speed rating that’s appropriate for your particular vehicle. This ensures that your car performs at a top rate – a rate that the manufacturer intended. One important thing to note about speed tests is that although tires may be tested to perform at high rates of speed, it is never recommended by tire or vehicle manufacturers to reach these speeds.

Tread Patterns

The tire tread is what makes tires unique in how they grip the road. There are many types of tire treads that perform differently. Choosing which is right for you and your vehicle can be challenging. Here are the most popular ones:

  • Symmetric tread patterns
  • Asymmetric tread patterns
  • Directional (undirectional) tread patterns
  • Asymmetric and directional tread patterns

Choosing tires for your vehicle can be a lengthy process with many factors to take into consideration. So, if you need any assistance in choosing the right the right tires for your vehicle, feel free to contact us at Eagle Ridge Chevrolet, Buick, GMC! We can help you choose the perfect tires for your vehicle and your needs. Call us at (604) 464-3941 or fill out our convenient online contact form and we’ll call you at your earliest convenience!