When it comes to tire choices, there’s no shortage of options for just about any vehicle. For those who live in areas that experience real seasons, however, it can be overwhelming to consider owning a separate set of tires for summer and winter. Luckily, there’s the ever-growing category of all-season tires that can cover you in anything from freezing temperatures and light snow in winter, to warm weather and rain in summer. So, what are all-season tires? 


All-season tires are exactly what the name implies: Tires designed to deliver safe performance in a wide variety of seasonal driving conditions. They’re ideal for many drivers in a wide range of vehicles and across a great deal of the country that reside within moderate climate zones. They work well in warm summer weather, cold winter weather, including light snow, and offer a good blend of comfort and performance. 

 
The weather in your area is a big factor when choosing tires, so all-season tires in Dallas are a great choice for most drivers since winter temperatures might dip into the 30s, and snow isn’t an issue. All-season tires in Kansas City are still a good choice for many drivers since most winters can be fairly mild; however, you’ll want to be cautious when snow accumulates.

 
You may be wondering what the true difference is between all-season tires, winter tires, and summer tires. Some of the differences are internal, but there are obvious visual differences when comparing any of them side-by-side, too.


Major Tire Differences
Rubber compound: Summer tires and winter tires are designed with temperature extremes in mind. The rubber in summer tires delivers impressive grip in normal to hot weather but gets harder and loses substantial grip when temperatures get close to the mid- and low-40°F range.
Winter tires, on the other hand, are designed with more flexible rubber compounds that work best below  45°F but can wear out quickly above that temperature. They’ll also often incorporate other technologies that maximize snow and ice traction.

Rubber compounds in all-season tires are a good compromise between the two, as they can handle hot weather without issue—though not as well as summer tires, and they can still be driven on safely in near-freezing temperatures, but they’re not as soft in freezing temperatures as winter tires would be. 

Tread design: Summer tires and all-season tires will often have similar looking tread patterns and tread depth, but all-season tires incorporate more siping for cold-weather traction and channeling of water on slightly snowy roads.
Winter tires have even more siping than all-season tires for improved grip in snow and on ice; They have deeper tread, more biting edges, and other visual cues between manufacturers (ie. michelin, goodyear, pirelli, etc.) that designate improved winter traction. 

Tire carcass: Summer performance tires often have stiffer overall construction to maintain stiff sidewalls for predictable handling and improved steering response.
Winter tires can also have a slightly stiff sidewall construction, but the tread blocks are tall and soft to ensure optimal traction in winter weather conditions.

All-season tires usually offer the best ride and comfort because of their construction, with touring all-season tires delivering optimal ride comfort and high-performance all-season tires giving a nice blend of sporty ride and confidence-inspiring handling along with a good level of comfort.

 

Are all-season tires good?
Tire technology has come a long way since the all-season category first came out in 1977. Several years ago, they seemed like nothing more than wishful thinking, and the idea of a tire that could do everything was too good to be true. The category was filled with tires that were just okay at everything, with no great qualities in any specific weather condition. But times have changed.

 
In fact, all-season tires are now original equipment on most new vehicles on dealer lots. That’s because they offer such a high level of versatility, including great ride comfort, low noise levels, good fuel economy, good performance, and all-weather usefulness in all but the worst conditions.

 
All-seasons are also a great option for replacement tires on most vehicles, especially for those who live in moderate climates and want one set of tires they can leave on the car all year long. Even the best all-season tires do have some compromises when it comes to ultimate handling in dry and winter performance, though. So, if you only drive in cold temperatures with light snow in the winter, and if you don’t plan to set any record-breaking lap times in warm weather, all-season tires are great for most drivers.

 
We often have customers ask, “Should I buy all-season tires?” and the answer is: It depends. There are many choices for sedans and coupes, all-season SUV tires, all-season truck tires, and performance all-season tires for sports cars that are driven year round. There are all-season tire choices for any type of car, so it mostly depends on where you drive and what your driving priorities are.

 
Are all-season tires good in snow?
Many all-season tires are fine for driving in mild winter weather, including light snow. There are even some available with the three-peak mountain snowflake (3PMSF) symbol which means they meet minimum specifications for use in deeper snow. It should be noted, however, that specifically designed winter tires will outperform all-season tires with the snowflake symbol. Those particular tires would still be all-seasons that just happen to be winter-biased, so there would be some compromises in their design which would be noticeable in severe winter weather and warmer summer temperatures. 

 
Tire technology continues to advance, so at some point in the future, there will likely be true four-season tires that can handle even the worst snow and ice. We’re not quite there yet, though.

 
What are the best all-season tires? 
The best all-season tires you can buy are (drum roll)…the ones that best suit your specific needs. Not the answer you were hoping for, but there’s really no one-size-fits-all answer for the question of which all-season tires are best, as it really depends on your vehicle, how you drive, and what sort of weather you experience. 

 
If you have a high-performance car of any sort and you want to take advantage of your vehicle’s handling in dry weather while having just one set of tires, then a high-performance all-season tire is going to be best for you. If you drive a large SUV or truck and want a nice ride with good traction in most weather, then all-season SUV or all-season truck tires would be ideal. 

 
How to choose all-season tires
The first thing to do when choosing all-season tires is to make sure you’re shopping for the correct tire size. That information can be found on the sidewall of your current tires, on the driver’s side door jamb of your vehicle, or in your owner’s manual if you have the original wheels and tire sizes installed. 

 
After that, it’s a matter of choosing the best all-seasons for your priorities. They’re available in various performance categories from touring to high-performance, and in a wide array of prices. 

 
For help in choosing the best all-season tires in Kansas City or the best all-season tires in Dallas, contact Zohr online or call/text us at 816-800-9175 and we’ll be happy to help you decide on what’s best for your vehicle. Plus, since we’re mobile tire installation technicians, we’ll deliver all-season tires directly to you and install them at your home or office.

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