Do you need new tires for your vehicle but are not sure where to start? If so, it helps to know a few basics about tire buying so you have some idea what you are picking out.
Understand The Tire Size
You need to start by knowing what size tires to buy for your car. However, that series of crazy numbers and letters may leave you wondering what you are actually buying. The numbers and letters tell you what kind of tires you can get that will fit on your existing vehicle and wheels.
For example, your tire size may be 190/50R15. The first number (190) is going to represent the width of the tires, which must match the width of the rims that are on your vehicle. The second number (50) is the height of the tire's sidewall. The next letter (R) represents the construction, with an R standing for a common type of radial tire. This is followed by the rim diameter (15), which must match the rim diameter of the wheels on your vehicle. While there can be some slight variations in the tire's sidewall height, the other values should stay the same.
Select The Type Of Tire
Now that you understand the size of your tires, you will need to pick out what type of tires you want for your vehicle. Many people debate if they need winter tires or all-season tires because they are unsure what the differences are.
Winter tires are going to be made out of softer rubber and have bigger tire treads. This allows the tires to be flexible and grip onto slick surfaces with ice and snow. All season tires are going to be made with a harder rubber and thinner treads, which perform well in warm climates where only water is traveling through the treads of the tires. Winter tires will wear down faster if used during the summer, and all-season tires will perform worse in the winter.
There are also run-flat tires that you can purchase. These tires have sidewalls made out of a harder rubber, which are designed to be driven on if you have a flat tire. You can't drive on the flat tire forever, but it will last you enough miles to safely get to an auto shop for a replacement tire. This can be a great option for someone that is not comfortable changing a flat tire or when you don't want to worry about having roadside assistance to get your vehicle towed. However, the tire tends to have a rougher ride than those that are constructed with a softer sidewall.
To learn more about buying tires, contact a tire shop like Sam's Tire Service Inc.