Whilst many drivers want their car to look glamorous, spick and span, and cutting edge, many don’t realise one of the upmost important elements are the tyres which grip the road and propel them forwards. Indeed, there are only four tyre contact patches which make your car move, meaning it’s essential you have tyres which provide high-quality braking, grip, and handling performance.
So how do you go about choosing the right tyre for your car? It’s more complex than you first realise, with factors to consider include the model of car you drive, what time of year it is, your budget, and the area of the world you live in. So here’s a brief guide on how to pick the right tyres and make getting from A to B a brilliant experience.
- Establish the basics
First of all, you’ll need to work out the size of your vehicle’s tyres. This information is readily available in your vehicle’s handbook – hopefully you’ve not thrown this away! However, you can also find the numbers you need along the wall of your tyres.
This will likely look something like this: 225/45 17R 91Y. This factors in the width, profile, and diameter of the compound, with the 91 indicating the speed rating.
This will vary depending on the vehicle you own. The tyres which initially are fitted to your vehicle are done so as they complement the car – as a result, always check your manufacturer’s handbook for information about the best fit for your vehicle.
- Consider your budget
Drivers often complain about the expense of tyres, but they are an essential element of your driving experience and should be considered as highly important. However, your budget may place a stress on which tyres you can afford.
The good news is modern tyre manufacturers are extremely professional and offer cutting edge tread patterns which are affordable for everyone. There are the likes of premium, mid-range, and budget tyres to choose from with dozens of brands to choose from. All I can suggest is you make the right choice based on what you can afford.
When you’re ready to make a purchase, do remember you can buy tyres online these days. There are services which will save you money and time, saving you from having to go into a garage to get a new set fitter. Certainly worth considering if you’re after a convenient service!
- Go for seasonal tyres
Next up, you’ll want to consider the time of year it is. If it’s spring, for instance, you may find all-season tyres are the right choice for you. Similarly, summer and winter tyres are manufactured with these times of year in mind, meaning drivers can easily adapt to road conditions such as heatwaves, heavy rain, snow, and ice.
They may seem like an expensive option considering most seasons come and go over the course of several months, but in the long run they can save you money by offering greater rolling resistance for fuel efficiency, as well as the improved safety you’d expect. This seasonal tyre guide from Goodyear is a fine example as to why you’d want to make the switch.
- How do you drive?
By this I don’t mean if you’re the next Lewis Hamilton or Max Verstappen – driving a road car isn’t about flooring it and shaving tenths of a second off your way to work each morning. Instead, consider whether you do a lot of miles over the course of each year, or if your car is simply a luxury rather than an essential part of your working life.
The tyres you fit should suit your needs as a driver, with manufacturers offering a selection of durability to make sure you get from A to B with the minimum of hassle. This guide to tyre testing highlights how manufacturers go about this, but it’s up to you as a driver to read in detail the tread pattern information supplied with each compound. From there you can make an informed purchasing decision.
- Do you need to keep on the move?
Finally, another brilliant, cutting edge option to consider are run flats. These tyres ensure, even in the event of a puncture, you’ll still be able to keep on the move. If there is a puncture, a run flat can fill up with a special formula which will allow a driver to continue on the road at speeds of up to 50mph to their next destination.
If you’re a driver who can’t afford to lose time with a puncture, then this is the right option for you. They’re convenient and you can drive to your nearest garage for an immediate replacement, saving you the hassle of sitting by the road trying to fix your flat. Why not carry a tyre pressure gauge with you in the boot so you can always quickly check if your tyres are at the right pressure.
This guide to run flat tyres is another good example as to why this would be an excellent option for you.