When you bought your vehicle, it came with tires. Simple. But when those tires needed replacing, you discovered just how many kinds of tires there were. That felt overwhelming, right? Next time, don’t worry. If you’re tired of not understanding your choices of tires, let AutoStream in Baltimore, Maryland, help you make a selection that is appropriate for your vehicle, driving conditions, and style.
Who knew there were so many kinds of tires? A quick description of each type can help you decipher the options to determine which ones you can use and which ones have features you prefer. Your choices are likely narrowed by the category vehicle you own. If you own a car (which includes crossovers and minivans), you will likely choose from five kinds of tires.
Often made with an asymmetrical tread pattern, touring tires (also known as grand touring) are designed for a comfortable ride and generally work well in all seasons and a variety of weather conditions.
All-season tires offer good handling and a nice ride. They typically feature symmetrical tread patterns, but they also have grooves encircling the tires to help with traction in wet conditions.
Performance tires have even larger such grooves as well as larger cross (lateral) grooves to help in wet weather and frequently have a material composition rated for higher speeds.
Summer tires are designed for use in both wet and dry conditions, but they are not suitable for winter (snow, ice) conditions.
Competition (racing) tires are also made to fit cars, but they are not for general street use. They are designed and best reserved for the track
If you drive a truck or SUV, you will probably choose from six tire types.
Highway tires are basically all-season tires that can handle the required heavier load.
Similarly, performance truck tires have the all-season pattern but are rated for higher speeds.
Trail or all-purpose tires also feature the all-season design, but they are more rugged for handling a variety of surfaces with.
All-terrains have tread blocks that make them more suitable for off-road conditions, and mud-terrain tires have even larger tread blocks for soft conditions such as mud and sand. However, they provide a less comfortable ride on standard road surfaces.
The choice of many commercial drivers, ribbed tires work well in multiple weather conditions, last a long time, and provide a comfortable ride.
One additional choice — the winter tire — is not suitable for everyone but maybe a consideration for drivers who live in climates where conditions are often cold (less than 45 degrees) and wet.
In addition to selecting the kind of tire to purchase, you should also consider the specific features that are important to you. As mentioned, the weather conditions in which you drive should impact your decision. You should also choose the correct size tire for your vehicle. Other factors are the appearance (style) you like, ride quality, speed rating, the ride noise you find tolerable, and the mileage life you expect. (Often, a smoother ride translates into a shorter tire life. Optimally, you hope to reach a balance between comfort and durability.) As you weigh your options, turn to AutoStream in Baltimore, Maryland. We’ll be glad to assist you!