Keeping your tyres in good condition is perhaps even more important in winter when a puncture could see you standing on the side of the road in the cold for long frozen moments which can be unpleasant if you are properly dressed – positively dangerous if you were relying on your car’s heater to keep you warm and cosy. Here are some tips for keeping your tyres in great condition during the winter months.
Clean and tidy
Tyre maintenance starts with the basics. Ensure that you clean your tyres at least once a week, even in winter. In fact, especially in winter: antifreeze, salt and grit can all build up on your tyres, filling up the treads and causing a slippery film that can interfere with your ability to control the car. Given how winter roads can be frozen and slippery, any tyre issues can quickly cause minor skids to become major issues.
Look for damage
When you are cleaning your tyres, make sure you keep an eye out for signs of damage or cracks. Extreme temperature changes can dry out and crack the material of the tyres, weakening them and making them prone to sudden failure. Punctures and blow-outs are never any fun, but should they happen in icy or foggy conditions, other drivers may also not be able to respond as quickly as they usually do, resulting in a multi-car pile-up, or similarly undesirable consequences. As soon as you spot signs of damage, switch that tyre for your spare and consult a garage or mechanic on the next steps to take. They may recommend having one set of tyres for summer and another for winter – the expense will be offset by both lots of tyres lasting a long time because of your careful maintenance. For new tyres you need to head to a reliable tyre dealer. One such tyre dealer is Headley Tyres. Headley Tyres Thatcham provides good quality, robust tyres at affordable rates and you can book your tyres online with them for free!
Low pressure maintenance
With every five or so degree change in temperature, your tyres are affected. Low temperatures mean that your tyres begin to deflate. This is bad enough, but the cold can then freeze the rubber into this new sagged shape, meaning that cracks and splits form when the tyre is properly inflated, or when you drive, putting weight and pressure on the tyres.
Brake with care
The risk of accidents goes up twenty per cent in winter, and can be higher in the face of extreme or unusual weather. Make sure you do not become a statistic by ensuring that you drive slowly and carefully, avoiding driving at all in storms and in poor weather if you can. When braking, use your brakes with care, avoiding slamming on the brakes because this can cause them to lock, putting you into an uncontrollable skid.
To summarise, when travelling in winter be careful and slow when driving, do not neglect your usual maintenance tasks – in fact, be even more vigilant than usual – and make sure that you give your tyres the best chance of keeping you safe and in control on the roads by keeping the tyres clean.