Since winter tyres are not mandatory in the UK, many motorists think they are unnecessary, and not worth the extra expense.
On this page, we would like to provide you with some more detailed information about these tyres and answer some of the most common questions.
What distinguishes winter tyres from other tyres?
Winter tyres are specifically designed for use during the cold months. Although there is no clear legal definition, there are a number of distinct features and characteristics that distinguish winter tyres from summer tyres. For example, the sipes on the tread, which are usually very fine, stand out at first glance. They provide additional grip on the road when it is wet or icy by forming additional grip edges when driving.
Depending on the manufacturer and model, winter tyres have up to 2,000 such transverse sipes.
Not immediately obvious, but at least as important for maximum grip in winter, is the special tread compound on winter tyres. This ensures that the rubber compound does not harden even at low temperatures and remains flexible, ensuring that the sipes remain grippy and interlock optimally with the surface of the road while driving. Summer tyres use a different rubber compound that hardens at low temperatures around or below 7 °C and thus offers significantly less grip.
When must the car be converted to winter tyres?
A general rule of thumb (depending on the area you live in) is that winter tyres should be used from "O to E," i.e. from October to Easter because experience shows that temperatures often fall below the critical value of 7 °C during this period. However, depending on the situation, you will be able to fit them later or take them off earlier.
How to recognise winter tyres
Since January 2018, winter tyres must display the Alpine symbol, a three-pointed pictogram with a snowflake in the middle. The "M+S" (mud and snow tyre) marking, which was still valid until the end of 2017, no longer meets the legal requirements. However, a transitional arrangement applies to these tyres until 30 September 2024. Tyres marked with M+S that were purchased before 2018 may also be used until September 2024.
What is the minimum tread depth required for winter tyres?
The minimum tread depth required for winter tyres is also 1.6 millimetres. However, for driving safety reasons, experts recommend a tread of at least 4 millimetres and a replacement of the tyres - regardless of the tread depth - after six years at the latest. This is because, by then the rubber compound has become so hard that it no longer provides the necessary grip at low temperatures.
Can winter tyres also be used in summer?
It is not advisable to use winter tyres during the warm season because the softer rubber compound causes a significant increase in braking distance at summer temperatures. In addition, fuel consumption also increases at higher temperatures, and winter tyres wear out more quickly in warmer weather, so they have to be replaced.
How fast can a car go with winter tyres?
Similar to summer tyres, there is also an index for the permissible speed for winter tyres.
When is the best time of year to buy winter tyres?
When you order winter tyres Tadley from Tadley Tyre Services, you always benefit from a wide selection from renowned premium-, mid-range and budget manufacturers.
You can buy your tyres Tadley from us in-store or via our website.
When buying cheap tyres Tadley online, all you have to do is enter your vehicle reg.-number or tyre size into our tyre finder section on this website. Within seconds, you will be able to see all the tyres we have available for your vehicle. Then just choose your favourites and let us know whether you would like to come to us for fitting or you would like us to come to you, using our mobile tyre-fitting service Tadley.
Do you have any additional questions or need advice before choosing your perfect tyres?
Please don’t hesitate to contact us. We are happy to help.