When driving during wintertime you definitely need winter tyres if you have winter conditions. Winter conditions include snow, ice, slush and low temperatures. Winter tyres have better performance versus summer tyres already when the temperature drops below zero degrees Celsius. This is because the rubber compound in summer tyres have been optimized for warm temperatures. So they will not be soft and flexible at low temperatures, they will actually turn hard. Tyres achieve some of its grip through the fact that they are able to comply with the surface, pushing some of its rubber into the micro-cavities in the surface. When you don’t have this you will lose some of the grip. This is why it is important to already change as the temperature drops and not wait for the snow to arrive. When the snow arrives it is already too late for you to change, unless you can do it without driving somewhere.
When it comes to winter tyres, you have a few options depending on where you live. The common winter tyres are only for winter use, so you will need to have summer tyres as well and alternate between them depending on the season. Some countries also allow all-weather tyres that have been winter approved, which can provide all year round driving safety. This allows you to use only one set and not have to worry about when to change tyres and the beauty is that you are always ready to drive regardless of weather conditions.
If you select a dedicated winter, then you have the non-studded tyres that are legal in all countries in Europe. They don’t have metal studs and instead use unique tread pattern and grip particles to achieve grip on both ice and snow. Some countries will allow for studded tyres, which use the metal studs. They come with some limitations depending on countries. Some countries only allow them for a certain time period and some don’t allow them at all. So if you plan to drive across country borders with studded tyres, you will need to check that you will not enter a country where they are not allowed. They are though superior on ice, so they are often used in areas where icy surfaces are more prevalent or you just want to make sure that you have the best possible grip when you drive.
For more info regarding winter tyres, visit: www.nokiantyres.com